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Always feeling out of it or catching a yawn? Here are 10 reasons why you are always feeling so exhausted. Maybe one of these solutions/situations fit the bill.
This article is for informational purposes only, and does not replace/is not medical advice.
1) Iron Deficiency
Did you know that hair loss is a sign of iron deficiency, aside from fatigue?
Well, now you do.
To refresh our memories, we need iron to produce haemoglobin for our red blood cells, which, in turn, transports oxygen throughout our body. It is an essential mineral that helps us function. There are two forms of iron: heme (animal sources) and non-heme. The former is easier for our bodies to absorb, so you may have to consume more iron-rich foods if you are vegan or vegetarian.
Good sources of iron include beef, leafy greens, nuts and beans.
2) B12 Deficiency
Yes — like iron, you need B12 to be functional. Your red blood cells cannot function without this either. You also need B12 to make DNA and more. Signs of a B12 deficiency include irritability, “pins and needles” sensations, and shortness of breath.
Vitamin B12 can be found in animal-based food or obtained via supplements.
3) Lack of rest
Sleep deprivation causes side effects that snowball. Your tired brain and body can lead to lowered concentration, weaker immunity, memory issues, poorer hand-to-eye coordination, and reduced physical activity.
Sleep debt leads to a higher risk for hypertension, dementia, diabetes and a whole host of issues. To relieve tiredness, there’s nothing you can do but sleep enough. Pillow mists or restricting electronic usage could help.
4) Not breathing properly
Shallow breaths = less oxygen = fatigue. It’s not something we stop to think about, so here’s a quick reminder! Proper posture helps us breathe better and take deeper breaths.
One way to take deeper, slower breaths? Breathe in and count to four before exhaling, again counting to four.
5) Caffeine dependence/addiction/exposure
Can’t go without 4 cups of coffee daily? The caffeine in coffee attaches to the adenosine receptors in our brains (adenosine being the chemical that regulates our sleep-wake cycles), which blocks us from feeling sleepy. This does not stop our bodies from producing adenosine, however, which is the build-up that hits us strongly after the caffeine wears off.
Those who consume more coffee, and have increased caffeine tolerance, also have an increased amount of adenosine receptors in their bodies. This is why you may experience withdrawal symptoms when drinking fewer cups than you usually do.
If you add sugar to your coffee, you could be experiencing sugar crashes too. Bear this in mind when your reach for your next cup of joe!
Can’t switch off the negative thoughts in your head? You could be prone to excessive rumination, which is different from overthinking. This means that you find yourself constantly worrying or thinking repetitively about a situation or problem (perceived or actual). It’s especially tough when it’s an issue or concern with no clear resolution.
This constant mind-racing causes stress and makes you feel anxious, which makes you feel tired. You may need to look up ways to manage this: it can get unhealthy and overwhelming.
Allergies, while not major illnesses, can drain your energy as your body fights off infections or tries to defend you from perceived threats.
Do you constantly feel sluggish and unable to think? If this “brain fog” comes with a stuffy nose, allergies could be the cause! Be it dust or something else, allergy symptoms can be behind that: your nasal and sinus air passages could be inflamed. This leads to congested and narrow airways and, subsequently, a reduced oxygen intake.
Things get even tougher when you are constantly exposed to allergens, like dustmites or mould. Try to eliminate them from your surroundings if possible!
9) Being too sedentary
If you’re too tired to move and keep fit, this could also make you less fit. Talk about a vicious cycle!
Curious why this happens? A lack of exercise limits your chances of gaining serotonin and dopamine, the hormones that improve your mood. It also decreases muscle mass and strength and your muscles’ capability to resist fatigue.
To combat this, get up and walk tea breaks, and try to include some moderate-intensity exercise in your week.
Last but not least (for this article), you could also be drinking insufficient water. Our bodies are made up of 60% water, and we need water for every bodily function and process. Our brains are made up of at least 73% water, and even 1% to 2% dehydration affects everything from memory coordination[i] to digestion.
Out of sight and out of mind: keep a bottle of hot and cold water each on your desk to remind you to hydrate throughout the day!
Of course, there are many more reasons why we may feel like a train steamrolled us in the early mornings. These, however, are commonplace. We hope this article helps remind you about them so that you can make tiny amendments, if any are contributing factors to your fatigue, and start feeling like your best self. Take care, and wishing you well!
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