You’ve had the blood test results back and, thankfully, all is well (or pretty much). Your thyroid has been checked and it’s fine. So why are you so tired all the time? And what can you do to cure it?

Read our 6 ways to cure tiredness to help end the frustration and low mood that goes with feeling constantly exhausted. And have hope, you should see a significant upsurge in your energy levels within just ten days of following our tips.

6 Ways to Cure Tiredness

1. Move more: It doesn’t have to mean hitting the gym or running for miles. In fact, research shows that just a brisk walk daily can make a noticeable improvement to our energy levels. It can be so hard to find the motivation to exercise when you feel exhausted but you can start with just 10 minutes a day. Then increase it by 5 minutes each week and, by that time, you’ll start to feel better so you’ll actually want to move. Make a chart on your wall and write down the days you got out and notice how you feel better – it really does work. Winter is an especially important time to keep moving as it helps strengthen our immune system to beat off those colds and flus.

2. Sleep better: Sounds obvious, doesn’t it? Sleep is designed to help us regenerate our bodies and minds: virtually every system of our body pays the price if we don’t get the right amount or quality of sleep that we need. But you’d be surprised by the amount of people who are getting poor quality sleep, particularly with the introduction of those sleep-stealing screens into our bedrooms (research has proven that the light from screens interferes with good quality sleep). Poor sleep can also lead to a thicker waistline as we produce a hormone called ghrelin when we are sleep deprived, and this hormone makes us hungrier and less satisfied with small portions. Avoiding caffeine in the afternoon, taking an epsom salt bath and taking magnesium and B vitamins can all help, as can acupuncture; but if you’re still struggling, see your GP to discuss other options.

3. Break your sugar addiction: Sugar gives us a false ‘high’, followed by a crash in blood sugar and energy levels. Sugar also reduces a thing called ‘orexin’ in our brains, making us feel rundown and tired. Unfortunately, sugar is in everything these days, and the problem is that it’s often hidden. It’s lurking in processed foods, bread, yoghurts and cooking sauces to name just a few. Unlike vitamins, minerals and proteins, we don’t need even small amounts of sugar to survive, yet we crave it. MRI scans have been taken just after people consume sugar which show that sugar clearly activates our brain in a similar way to cocaine. The simple answer? Cut it out. Wean yourself off it over the course of 3-5 days and you’ll start to feel the benefits. A good place to start is with your food diary. Monitor your blood sugars by eating a good combination of proteins and vegetables every 3-4 hours to help avoid cravings.

4. Get (properly) hydrated: Some GPs believe that half of the people that attend them for fatigue are actually dehydrated. In fact, we know that human beings can survive for almost three weeks without food but can only last days without water. This should indicate just how essential water is for our survival, but unfortunately many of us neglect our water intake, leading to symptoms such as fatigue. When you’re dehydrated, your blood pressure can drop thus decreasing blood flow to the brain, making you feel sleepier and fatigued. Also, did you know that dehydration can affect melatonin, the sleep hormone? If you’re chronically dehydrated it can also gradually reduce your levels of essential amino acids which are needed to produce melatonin, throwing off your circadian rhythm and making it harder for you to stay asleep.

5. Keep a food diary: Keeping a food diary is one of the best ways to not only help lose weight, but also to monitor your diet for energy-zapping foods. The key is to eat iron rich protein foods (women, in particular, are prone to iron-deficiency (anemia) which may be the cause of their fatigue) such as lean red meat, eggs and fish. Make sure your diet also includes plenty of vegetables (many of us consume only 1 or 2 portions per day, when some experts believe it should be more like 10 a day). If you struggle with getting enough in, try making soup every second day and experiment with different veg (try our homemade minestrone soup). Or go for a smoothie which has plenty of greens blended in. Other ideas include adding veggies into homemade pasta sauces, having spinach at breakfast or making some kale crisps to munch on while watching a movie.

6. Slow down: Stress is the cause of a lot of fatigue these days and can be as much the result of physically pushing ourselves too much (running around after children or ‘on the go’ all the time at work) as psychological stress (of trying to keep too many balls up in the air, or worrying about things incessantly). The answer is to slow down. The reality is that many of us are juggling work, endless chores, places to be and errands to run. Top that off with our unhealthy attachment to our smartphones and emails, and it’s a recipe for overwhelming mental fatigue. Additionally, we are wolfing down our meals, in a hurry to get to almost everywhere we go and neglecting time to slow down and just ‘be’. Now is a great time to slow down and to start feeling the benefits. We’ve written a special report on how to slow down and why it could be the best health investment that you could possibly make in 2019.

There you have it, our 6 Ways to Cure Tiredness. Regular readers will know that we dont preach an all or nothing approach. Instead, we advocate taking one at a time and before you know it, you’ll have all of the 6 Ways to Cure Tiredness fully onboard.

Note: Sometimes there can be a medical cause for tiredness and therefore it’s crucial to get these symptoms checked out by your GP, who will likely order blood tests or other tests. This article (6 Ways to Cure Tiredness) is in no way a replacement for seeking sound medical advice.

Blog Post by Maebh Coyle