In theory a good night’s sleep – consisting of 7-8 hours’ sleep per night – should prepare us for the day ahead but, as we know, this isn’t always the case! One of the most common causes of fatigue and waking unrefreshed is sleep apnoea. If your fatigue is really affecting the quality of your life, it is vital you have an assessment for this condition. If sleep apnoea or some other medical condition, such as anaemia or a thyroid disorder has been excluded, cardiologist Dr Ross Walker recommends these five tips for easing fatigue:
Cut the caffeine
Your day should begin when you get out of bed – not when you’ve had your coffee. While coffee can be the pick-me-up you need to start your morning, you shouldn’t need it. If you’re feeling fatigued you might need to cut out the caffeine. Rather than going cold turkey, and experiencing those awful headaches, try to gradually cut back on your caffeine intake.
While you might feel tired and worn out after a brisk walk or a swim, you’ll feel more energised in the long run. Many people think exercise can cause fatigue, but there are numerous studies that indicate exercise actually boosts energy and increases the efficiency of your muscles, lungs and heart.
If you’re getting enough sleep, exercising, eating well, and cutting out the caffeine but still feeling fatigued you might need to bring in a little help. Ubiquinol is a powerful antioxidant, that is vital to providing energy and relieving the body from oxidative stress. Ubiquinol is also found naturally in our bodies, but unfortunately depletes in levels after the age of 30, so it’s worth discussing supplementation with your healthcare practitioner.
When refuelling your car fill it to the top – not with the bare minimum to get you down the road – so why would you do that to your body? While sugary foods can give you an immediate boost, your energy will soon run out and you’ll be left feeling tired and hungry. Food is fuel to your body which is why it’s important to nourish yourself with natural and healthy foods to ensure you have a full tank, and run like a well-oiled engine.
Fatigue may actually be a result of ongoing stress. Meditation, yoga, spending time with friends and family, and listening to music are calming activities that help minimise stress and, in the long term, fight off fatigue.
*Speak to your healthcare practitioner to further discuss your supplementation needs.
Dr Walker is a leading integrative cardiologist based on the upper north shore of Sydney. He provides a service in all aspects of echocardiography, focusing on stress echocardiography, which is a well-accepted, accurate method for assessing heart disease that does not involve irradiation or injections.
He is the author of seven books, including, ‘The Life Factor’ and ‘5 Stages of Health’, and appears regularly as a media commentator including hosting a regular health show on 2UE, a leading Australian radio station. Dr Walker lectures both nationally and internationally on this subject.