Tiredness - Root Causes

There are many factors that impact energy levels: sleep quality; hormonal balance; body temperature; adrenal function; digestive problems; food allergies/intolerances; nutritional deficiencies; low grade chronic infections; heavy metals; depression; and work overload/stress.

Sleep is the time when we recharge our battery. Physical repair of the body occurs between 10:00pm and 2:00am. Psychological repair occurs between 2:00am and 6:00am. Inappropriate sleep habits, certain medications, foods or drinks and/or health issues can result in gray days and gray nights instead of bright days and dark nights. Each potential issue needs to be considered and addressed. Wearing an eye cover while you sleep helps to ensure darkness.  Any light coming through the closed eyelids can decrease the effectiveness of one’s sleep hormone called melatonin.  Supplementation with melatonin can improve the depth and quality of sleep.  It is non-addictive and natural. Various herbs can also be useful.  Blood sugar stability throughout the night is also critical for rejuvenating sleep.




Hormonal balance is critical to investigate. Estrogen, progesterone and testosterone levels can greatly impact energy levels and sense of well-being. When indicated we often prescribe bioidentical hormone therapy.

Body temperature determines the metabolic rate of our body’s furnace. Anyone that has a tropical fish tank at home can witness the change of one degree has on the fish.  When it is set lower, the fish slow down. Body temperature is a good guide for thyroid function. How well a person feels depends a great deal on enzyme function, which depends on body temperature, which in turn depends primarily on active thyroid hormone (T3) stimulation of the cells. Enzyme function also depends on shape and shape depends on genetic boding and temperature. Colder body temperatures (less than 37˚C or 98.6˚F) causes enzymes to tighten up or change shape.  In this new shape, they will not work in the particular enzyme reactions and the cell will suffer consequences. The function of the entire metabolism depends on the body temperature because it dictates the shape and therefore function of the body’s enzymes.  Symptoms of low body temperature include sluggishness, cold intolerance, weight gain, puffiness and sometimes constipation. Various treatments are available to enhance body temperature and thyroid function.

Adrenal balance is also necessary to maintain our "furnace" or body temperature and hormonal balance. The adrenal glands are responsible for making many hormones. When they are overworked or stressed, hormone imbalance can result. Symptoms may include: hypoglycemia, constipation, fatigue, brain fog, irritability, irregular heart rate, sensitivities to smell and bright sunlight, salt cravings, increased voiding, dizziness when standing etc. Often these individuals tend to be thin, have low blood pressure and cold intolerance.  Increasing salt intake, taking specialized supplements such as licorice, adrenal gland extract, B vitamins, etc. and/or specialized intravenous infusions can help to restore the function of the adrenal gland.

Digestive issues can cause gas, bloating and irritable bowel type symptoms. Use of digestive enzymes, probiotics, supplements targeted to healing a leaky gut and dealing with chronic infections can be very beneficial.

Food Allergies or sensitivities can weaken the immune system and cause inflammation.  If you eat a food that you are allergic to or sensitive to, the body sees the body as an “intruder”. The body then turns on its immune system to get rid of the perceived enemy. You can then experience gas, bloating, irritable bowel symptoms and fatigue (then same type of tiredness as you get when fighting the flu).  The food may not give immediate symptoms as in an immediate type of allergic reaction.  Many reactions are more delayed and can last weeks to months.

Nutritional deficiencies of B12, iron, B complex and/or various minerals can cause fatigue.  They act as catalysts for chemical physiological steps involved in cell function. Deficiencies need to be identified and then addressed.


Low Grade Chronic Infection can zap the body of energy.  Some worn out clients were well until they caught a “flu” that they never fully recovered from.  They feel like they have a low-grade fever and chills at times.  They may also experience an “achy” body, another symptom of “flu”. For these types of clients, treatments need to be aimed at fighting the infection.

Heavy metals can interrupt the body’s ability to make energy.  Different metals such as mercury, lead, cadmium, arsenic and aluminum can effect energy levels. Determining the types of metals involved and finding the best way to remove them is and important factor in healing.

Depression can dampen the driving force of the body.  Feeling unenthused can make one become tired. Biochemical imbalances of neurotransmitters such serotonin, dopamine, GABA and/or glutamate can be helped with natural supplements and dietary measures.

Work overloadand stress is rampant in our society.  Taking on more than one can handle is extremely common.  No amount of medicine can erase the fatigue until a person makes some fundamental life style changes and learns to cope with day to day stressors in a more effective way.