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Tired All the Time?

So much unexplained tiredness comes from a breakdown in mitochondrial function. In Patrick Holford’s upcoming seminars in SA, he’ll be talking about how to increase your energy and recover from chronic fatigue.

Mitochondria are the energy factories of cells- they are responsible for the rate of metabolism or energy production. The harder they work, the more oxidizing free radicals are produced (from the air we breathe, smoking, alcohol, high-saturated fats, chemicals in the home and used on fruit and vegetables) – which age the mitochondria and have the potential to damage cells. This prevents the mitochondria from doing what they do best – produce energy. This also speeds up the process of aging.

SO – how do you make sure your mitochondria are constantly working at their full potential? Here are Patrick Holford’s suggestions from his new book, Good Medicine;

Good Medicine solutions for fatigue:

1)    Balance your blood sugar levels

The most common cause of general fatigue is blood sugar problems or lack of nutrients, especially the B vitamins and vitamin C, which are vital for converting food into energy. If you experience pronounced energy dips when you haven’t eaten and you crave sweet foods, it’s particularly important to start following a low GL diet and to supplement with good quality, high potency multivitamins.  You could also be tired as a result of adrenal fatigue- from too much stress and also linked to the overuse of stimulants i.e. smoke and coffee.

2)    Check your thyroid

Another common cause of fatigue is an underactive thyroid gland- which produces the hormone thyroxine- vital for keeping good energy levels. Your thyroid function can be tested by your doctor.

3)    Check for digestion problems or hidden food allergies

Digestion problems and the consequential food allergies are linked to poor liver detoxification. If you experience digestion related problems like bloating, indigestion and tummy pain (along with tiredness), it is worth supplementing with a combination of digestive enzymes, which help to break down your food completely, plus beneficial bacteria to re-ioculate the gut.

4)    Check your liver detoxification potential

Poor liver detoxification is a common cause of fatigue, because the liver has to break down and dispose of the by-products, or ‘exhaust fumes’ of our normal metabolism, as well as any other toxic substances we consume. Give your liver some help every now and then with a good detox. Patrick’s book 7 Day Liver Detox is great to have on your shelf- it explains the detoxifying process, provides a 7 day menu plan as well as all the recipes that you need.

Best foods:

–       Vegetables (especially greens and cruciferous vegetables)

–       Fish (especially oily fish like salmon, mackerel, herring, kippers, sardines)

–       Gluten free grains such as brown rice, quinoa, oats

–       Berries

–       Raw nuts and seeds

–       Red onions and garlic

Worst foods:

–       Sugar

–       Processed food

–       Burned fat and meats

–       Dairy products

–       Wheat

–       Yeast