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Chronic fatigue syndrome?

Updated: Jun 21, 2021



Symptoms

Many of the symptoms are similar to flu symptoms but differ by being present over a longer period (six months or longer). Core symptoms include:

  • Extreme and disabling fatigue, which is not relieved with rest or sleep. The fatigue may be worse after any form of exertion, and is significant enough to interfere with school, work or family life.

  • Sore muscles and/or joints

  • Swollen, tender lymph glands

  • Forgetfulness and short-term memory problems, inability to concentrate

  • Sore throat

  • Headaches

  • Sleep disturbances

Other symptoms that may occur include, (but are not limited to):

  • Immune system dysfunction

  • Mild (low-grade) fever , chills and night sweats

  • Digestive disturbances such as abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhoea, and constipation.

  • Respiratory symptoms such as chronic cough and shortness of breath

  • Psychological symptoms such as depression and anxiety

  • Low blood pressure, dizziness and fainting

  • Sensitivity to light, blurred vision, sore and/or dry eyes

  • Allergies and sensitivity to alcohol, noise, odours, chemicals, medicine and foods

  • Weight changes

  • Some sufferers experience relapses of the symptoms after periods of being relatively well  


Causes

Research has not yet been able to pin down the cause of CFS. Amongst potential causes and contributing factors that have been proposed are:

  • Immune system dysfunction

  • Viral infection (e.g. Epstein-Barr virus)

  • A history of allergies

  • Hormonal imbalance

  • Low blood sugar

  • Iron-deficiency anaemia

  • Low blood pressure

  • Nervous system inflammation

CFS may initially develop at times of increased physical or mental stress, during or after an infection, or with no discernible triggers. Sensitivities to foods, medicines, chemicals (e.g. pesticides, heavy metals, household cleaning products, or other environmental toxins) and alcohol are a common feature of CFS. From a naturopathic perspective, exposure to or poor detoxification of these substances may contribute to the cause, worsen the symptoms and/or delay recovery. Other aggravating factors may include nutritional deficiencies, imbalance of the bacteria inhabiting the bowel, poor oxygenation of body tissues, and dysfunction of the immune, endocrine (hormone) or nervous systems. CFS is most common in people aged 40-59 years old. It is diagnosed in up to four times more women than men, but this may be partially due to the fact that women are more likely than men to consult health professionals when they’re unwell. It sometimes occurs in members of the same family, suggesting that genetic factors may be involved.

Diet and lifestyle

  • IMAGNESIUM L-THREONATE ADVANCED COMPLEX supports more than 300 biochemical reactions in your body including:

  • Energy creation that converts food into energy, creates new protein from amino acids and aids repair DNA and RNA in muscle contraction and relaxation.

  • Enhances neurotransmitters to your brain and nervous system.

  • Aids depression, muscle fatige, exercise performance, migraines, PMS symptoms, insuline resistance and many more.

  • Supports blood pressure, chronic inflamation wich is one of the drivers of aging and obesity disease.

  • Chronic fatigue syndrome is a complex and debilitating condition that requires expert professional treatment. Every patient experiences different symptoms and will require individual treatment. Always consult your healthcare professional before starting a new course of treatment.

  • Keeping a symptom diary that records foods eaten, chemicals exposed to (everything from liquid paper to house paint can cause an aggravation), and how you feel can help you to understand your condition better. Elimination of suspected items may be necessary, followed by reintroducing them one by one, in order to pinpoint which substances may be aggravating the symptoms. Avoid any foods or other substances that you are allergic to or intolerant of.

  • Eat a well-balanced diet containing plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, lean protein, whole grains, nuts and seeds. If you are sensitive to pesticides or other agricultural chemicals, you may wish to consume only organic produce.

  • Avoid caffeine, alcohol, smoking and refined sugar.

  • Drink plenty of fluids, especially filtered water.

  • Try to avoid situations that are physically or emotionally stressful.

  • A regular, graded exercise programme is recommended; ideally working with a physical therapist, to ensure your condition is not aggravated. Tai chi may be an appropriate form of exercise, as it is gentle and helps to improve immunity.

  • Be sure to rest when you need to - pushing yourself to do more than you are capable of is likely to make you feel worse. Think of your exercise programme as a long-term, gradual rehabilitation process, and take it slow and steady. Even at times when you are feeling well, over-doing things may exacerbate your symptoms and cause a relapse.

  • Acupuncture may aid pain management in some people.

Always listen to your body and take rest when you need it. Pushing yourself too hard over an extended period will weaken your immune system.

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