Do you feel exhausted more and more each day? If it has come to a point where even simple tasks are difficult to manage, you might already be dealing with fatigue.
Fatigue is more than feeling tired or sleepy. It’s an overwhelming state of physical and emotional exhaustion that cannot be fixed by a good night’s sleep. If left unchecked, fatigue can affect your productivity at work, your social relationships, and your overall health.
Thankfully, there are many ways to fight fatigue. By making simple but significant lifestyle changes, you can regain your lost energy, motivation, and, ultimately, your quality of life.
Ready to get started? Check out the best strategies for fighting fatigue.
How to Fight Fatigue Without Caffeine — Here Are 7 Healthy Alternatives!
For many people, coffee, soda, or an energy drink is an instant solution to tiredness and fatigue. While caffeinated beverages may increase alertness and performance, the effects are only short-term. Studies show that caffeine can contribute to fatigue, especially if you’ve developed a tolerance.
So put down the coffee mug and check out these healthier alternatives to fighting fatigue!
1. Move Your Body
Exercising to fight fatigue might sound counterintuitive. But studies have shown that physical activity helps raise the body’s energy levels.
Physical activity encourages the body to produce more mitochondria, which is responsible for increasing your energy supply. It also boosts energy circulation so that our body uses energy more efficiently. Exercising also leads to the release of endorphins for pain, stress relief, and enhanced well-being.
In one study, participants living a sedentary lifestyle engaged in 20 minutes of aerobic exercise for 6 weeks.
Compared to the control group, the low-intensity and moderate-intensity groups saw a 20% increase in their energy levels. The low-intensity group also reduced their fatigue levels by 65%, while the moderate-intensity group was at 49%.
This suggests that low-intensity exercise such as walking or biking can help fight fatigue. You can start with 15-30 minutes of movement each day. You can also incorporate strength training into your exercise routine twice a week when you've built up strength.
2. Improve Quality of Sleep
One of the best ways to fight fatigue is to get enough sleep. Experts recommend getting 7.5 to 8.5 hours of sleep daily to ensure optimal physical and mental alertness. Quantity, though, is not enough, and you must also ensure that you're getting quality sleep.
A good sleep routine can help preserve your natural circadian rhythm. You can also increase rapid eye movement (REM) sleep by sticking to a regular sleep/wake schedule, removing work and other distractions from your bedroom, and avoiding gadgets, caffeine, and alcohol before bed.
You're less likely to wake up feeling restless if you regularly get a good night's sleep.
3. Eat a Balanced Diet
If you're dealing with fatigue, it's also worth checking your diet. An unhealthy diet high in fat, carbs, and refined sugar can cause a drastic spike in your blood sugar levels. So when those levels drop just as dramatically, you're left feeling tired, irritable, and exhausted.
According to studies, chronic low-grade inflammation may also induce or maintain fatigue. During a pro-inflammatory response, the body switches to a less efficient form of energy production. This depletes our glucose stores much faster, so the body has less energy to use.
You can adopt a healthy and balanced diet to ensure that your body has enough energy. This includes whole grains, vegetables, fruits, lean protein, fatty fish, and nuts or seeds.
A balanced diet has been linked to positive health outcomes, including fatigue relief. That's because your body gets a good dose of vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, amino acids, antioxidants, carotenoids, and omega-3 fatty acids.
4. Check for Nutritional Deficiencies
The CDC has found that only about 10-12% of Americans are getting their recommended dose of fruits and vegetables. This could mean that most people are also not getting enough vitamins, minerals, and nutrients from their diet. Nutritional deficiencies have been linked to chronic fatigue.
According to studies, when the body does not have enough energy to meet one’s needs, it ends up using energy stored in fatty tissue and muscles. This, in turn, contributes to weakness, reduced physical performance, and fatigue.
Sometimes, environmental factors can also lead to nutrition deficiencies. For instance, have you noticed that you feel more fatigued during winter? That's because the days get shorter, and we get less and less sun exposure. This can lead to a vitamin D deficiency, which means lower energy levels and an increased risk of developing fatigue.
To fight fatigue, ensure you're getting your recommended dose of Vitamin B, C, D, magnesium, zinc, omega-3, L-carnitine, L-tryptophan, and CoQ10. These nutrients are not only helpful in fighting fatigue, but they can also help boost your immunity and overall health.
5. Manage Stress
Dealing with stress can cause us to expend more energy than usual, and thus, we feel physically and mentally exhausted. One way to fight fatigue would be to learn proper stress management techniques (which already include exercise, proper diet, and a good night's sleep). Spending time with loved ones, listening to music, and engaging in hobbies are other strategies for stress relief.
Studies have also shown that mindfulness-based activities such as meditation, deep breathing, and yoga can help reduce fatigue and improve quality of life. Mindfulness is about being present in the moment and approaching stress in a non-judgmental manner. As we become less reactive to stress, we don't use up as much energy, which can help reduce fatigue.
6. Avoid Alcohol
Similar to caffeinated beverages, alcohol can also contribute to fatigue. That’s because alcohol can make us feel drowsy. But at the same time, we don’t get restful sleep. Studies show that consuming alcohol can release stress hormones and raise our heart rate. It can also worsen sleep apnea and cause insomnia.
Alcohol can also lead to dehydration. This leads to lower blood pressure and slower metabolism, which makes us feel sluggish and groggy when we wake up.
So when fighting fatigue, it’s better to avoid alcohol as much as possible. You’re also reducing your risk for other diseases associated with alcohol.
7. Rule Out Health Problems
Fatigue is not always caused by lifestyle factors but can also be a symptom of an underlying physical or mental condition. It could point to thyroid, heart, kidney, or liver issues. Unusual exhaustion may also be caused by a viral infection.
As such, it's important to consult your primary care doctor to rule out any potential health problems. It also gives you a good baseline of your current functioning. You're in a much better position to implement lifestyle changes that can reduce your fatigue risk and boost your overall health.
Importance of Creating a Daily Foundation for Health
Researchers have found that the longer you do not address fatigue, the harder it is to manage. So before it starts to impact different areas of your life, it's better to fight fatigue head-on. You can do this by creating a daily foundation of health.
Sleep, diet, and exercise are your strongest allies in fighting fatigue. Make sure you get quality sleep, move your body regularly, and eat a healthy diet. Avoiding unhealthy habits such as drinking alcohol and caffeine and coping well with stress can help combat overwhelming exhaustion.
To ensure your overall health, it also helps to rule out health problems and potential nutritional deficiencies. It's important to schedule regular health checkups. You should also incorporate supplements to help strengthen your body against fatigue, stress, and diseases.
At Xendurance, we offer a Daily Foundation bundle of supplements to support your overall health. With three different components — Essential, Immune Boost, and Omega+D3 — you are getting the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients the body needs to produce and sustain energy. It’s like health insurance!
Fight Fatigue and Improve Your Quality of Life
Fatigue can be caused by lifestyle, activity level, and current health condition. It can also be affected by factors beyond our control — like the weather.
No matter the cause, what's more important is that you're taking steps to fight fatigue. This is to avoid fatigue from seeping into different areas of your life, such as work, and affecting your relationship with family and friends.
With simple but effective lifestyle changes, you can ensure that your body can produce as much energy as you need. This helps protect against fatigue and other lifestyle-related conditions. You can feel good knowing you're giving your body the best chance at overall health.