Overcoming Chronic Fatigue with Nutrition

By Shane YoungJuly 15, 2015

Can you guess the number one symptom patients in the United States discuss with their physicians? I’d bet that many of you have also experienced it.

Yes, that’s right. Fatigue. Specifically, long-term, unyielding fatigue that just won’t seem to respond to developing healthier sleeping habits, increased/decreased physical activity, or supplements.

We’ve all been there and I’m excited to share more information about what you can do to combat this debilitating disorder.

First, some background.

It’s been estimated that upwards of 3 million Americans suffer from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), a convoluted disorder characterized by generalized extreme fatigue without a specific etiology. CFS doesn’t improve with rest and can actually worsen with increased physical or mental activity.

While the cause is largely unknown, many medical experts believe it to be triggered by myriad factors from psychological stressors to infections.

Recently, practitioners at the C.H.E.K. Institute, have focused on how intentional nutritional shifts can actually alleviate the symptoms of CFS and restore your body’s natural ability to respond to common stressors and physiological changes that have a tendency to manifest in extreme fatigue.

Based on their recommendations, I’ve compiled a list of largely anti-inflammatory foods to incorporate into your diet as well as foods to avoid, especially if you just can’t seem to bounce back from feeling tired all the time!

With any dietary shift, it’s especially important to properly hydrate and I cannot emphasize this enough! Be sure to drink at least half your body weight in fluid ounces per day. And, remember to drink more if you’re active and/or sweat a lot.

Foods to enjoy

  • Beans & legumes
  • Organic, seasonal vegetables
  • Organic, seasonal fruit
  • Organic, grass-fed meat
  • Local, sustainably caught fish
  • Seeds & freshly cracked nuts
  • Natural yogurt (unless you have a specific sensitivity to dairy)
  • Wheat-free bread, oatcakes, rice cakes
  • Cold-pressed vegetable oils (for dressings)

Foods to avoid

  • Sugar – in all its forms
  • Yeast – all foods containing it or derived from it
  • Wheat (especially if you have a specific intolerance)
  • Refined grains such as white rice and white flour products
  • Malted products – some cereals and drinks
  • Fermented products – vinegar, soya sauce, alcohol
  • Cow’s milk and most milk products
  • Caffeinated tea & coffee as they are stimulants
  • Artificial sweeteners


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