Health

Reasons why you’re tired all the time

Here are seven factors that could be contributing to poor sleep quality which results in fatigue

You get more than enough sleep every night, yet you wake up in the mornings feeling like a wreck. What's draining your energy? Some of these lifestyle culprits may surprise you.

1. YOUR SLEEP IS OF 
POOR QUALITY

You may not have difficulty falling asleep, but what's your sleep quality like?

Ideally, you should sleep soundly and wake up feeling alert, refreshed and ready to take on the day.

If it's been a while since you've started your day that way, you may want to look at how you're sleeping: Do you toss and turn a lot during the night? Does your partner's snoring keep you up? Is your bedroom conducive to a good night's rest? Do you wake up frequently to use the bathroom?

All these factors can affect your sleep quality, even if you do get the recommended six to eight hours a night.

2. YOU'RE NOT GETTING 
ENOUGH EXERCISE

When you're sapped of energy, the last thing you want to do is exercise.

But low-intensity exercise is just the prescription if you're constantly sluggish. Just 20 minutes a day reduces stress, boosts energy levels, increases stamina and keeps your heart and lungs healthy (therefore allowing these organs to pump blood and oxygen throughout your body more efficiently).

No matter how tired you feel, get outdoors and move at least once a day. A brisk stroll, a few laps in the pool, or even sprinting up the stairs are enough to bring you back to life.

3. YOU COULD BE IRON-DEFICIENT

Iron is an essential element in the production of blood - specifically, haemoglobin, which is a protein component of red blood cells responsible for transferring oxygen around your body.

If you are deficient in this mineral, you'll have less oxygen reaching your tissues and your body will be deprived of the energy it needs.

Fatigue is one of the most common and obvious signs of iron deficiency. This lack of energy may be accompanied by shortness of breath, coldness in your hands and feet, and even dizziness.

Your doctor will be able to test if you are iron deficient.

A common cause of iron deficiency is a lack of iron in the diet, so be sure to increase your intake of iron-rich foods, like leafy green vegetables and red meat.

Heavy menstrual bleeding and blood loss from pregnancy can also cause iron deficiency.

4. YOU HAVE PROBLEMS WITH YOUR THYROID

Your frequent exhaustion may be a sign that there's something wrong with your thyroid, which is a gland located in the front of your neck.

The thyroid produces hormones that control your metabolism. If the gland is underactive, you may have hypothyroidism; an overactive thyroid gland produces too much thyroid hormone, causing a condition called hyperthyroidism.

Both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism cause problems like fatigue, and muscle soreness and muscle weakness respectively.

A blood test can determine if you have a thyroid issue or not, so speak to your doctor if you want to rule this out. The good news is that both conditions are easily treatable.

5. YOUR BODY IS LACKING VITAMIN B12

Vitamin B12 is crucial for the production of red blood cells, nerve and DNA. Without it, you may experience problems like weakness, a lack of concentration and fatigue.

Vitamin B12 is only found naturally in meat, dairy products, poultry and eggs, so if you are a strict vegetarian or vegan, you risk developing a deficiency. It might be a good idea to speak to a nutritionist to find out how you can increase your B12 intake (either with a supplement or with foods that have been fortified with this vitamin).

6. YOUR TECH HABIT MAY BE TO BLAME

Spending all day in front of your computer, only to come home and spend those few hours before going to bed in front of your tablet or phone can strain your eyes and neck muscles.

In the long run, this can leave you feeling exhausted. To prevent this, avoid using your gadgets at least three hours before bedtime and, if you're on the computer a lot during the day, remember to take frequent breaks to rest your eyes and stretch.

7. YOU DON'T DRINK ENOUGH WATER

Dehydration can make you feel lethargic; you may even experience headaches, poor concentration and drowsiness.

This is because a loss of fluid causes a drop in blood volume, forcing your heart to work harder to pump blood and nutrients throughout your system.

Don't wait until you feel thirsty before chugging a glass of water, because your body would likely already be dehydrated at this point.

Instead, aim to drink six to eight glasses of water a day - more if you're active - and cut back on dehydrating beverages like caffeinated drinks and alcohol.

This story is adapted from 
HerWorldPlus.com.

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