Fixing Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Feeling exhausted all the time?
Do you wake up and have to drag yourself out of bed, or after a short time have to go back to bed to rest?
Has your exercise tolerance, mental clarity, libido and passion for life all gone down and nothing seems to fix them?
Have you ever been diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or Fibromyalgia or depression or told it’s “post viral fatigue” and there’s nothing you can do?
Do you find your lack of energy is now impacting your studies, work, or relationships?
Do you find it hard to concentrate or seem to lack the motivation or confidence you once had?
Or has someone said to you that it’s “all in your head”?
You’re not alone!
Fatigue in all shapes and forms affects millions of people in Australia. Unfortunately often patients are left being bounced around the health system without getting better. The causes of fatigue are incredibly diverse, from sleep issues, toxin exposures, hormonal imbalance, key nutrient deficiencies, (or over supplementation), gut issues, auto immune disease, heart disease, diabetes, head injuries and many others.
You need a comprehensive medical review to firstly understand the origins of your symptoms, then have a customised treatment plan created that builds a solid foundation for long term health. That is what we do in the first appointment with you.
We use all the mainstream as well as the latest cutting edge Functional Medicine tests to get to the bottom of your symptoms. We seek the Why behind the Why. Labeling a cluster of symptoms as a “disease” usually tells us little of why a person has the condition or how to reverse it.
Instead of just labeling and treating a symptom, our approach is to go upstream and fix the cause. For example you may need an iron infusion (which we can provide), however we’d want to get to the bottom of why you were low in iron in the first place, so long term you still feel great.
We look deeply into biochemistry too so even if there is a mental component we know the best approach to help fix it. Often mental health issues go hand in hand with physical conditions, especially if they are chronic. Suffering a physical condition for long enough will almost always cause secondary mental health problems like anxiety and depression. These are normal responses to losing hope and to long term biochemical imbalances. Your gut and brain are intricately connected (read more here). We understand this and use this to attack the problem of fatigue from all sides. Did you know that 90% of your serotonin is made in your gut? And that 80% of your immune system is in your gut? It would be silly to ignore such a vital piece of your body.
Rarely do we use medication, and it would always be in the context of a holistic diet, lifestyle, and targeted nutrient approach.
Mitochondria - The Powerhouse of the Cell
For many people the deep inner cause of their symptoms is some dysfunction in their mitochondria. Researchers now believe many diseases start at this inner level, including Alzheimer’s, muscular dystrophy, Lou Gehrig’s disease, diabetes and cancer. Your mitochondria are the “power plant” inside each of your cells. When they’re not functioning optimally, you have far less energy. Like a mobile phone with a faulty battery, if you have little energy being made you will soon run out of energy, and need to be recharged (by resting you allow your mitochondria to generate more energy). Unfortunately if the amount made is insufficient (or is being burnt doing other tasks such as dealing with severe stress), then it is soon depleted again and you need to rest again, and so on.
There are specific tests we can perform that show clear signs of mitochondrial dysfunction, and specific targeted antioxidant and mitochondrial supports we can use to help restore wellness.
A researcher recently said:
“Mitochondria can be thought of rather like a car engine, that burns fuel (specific food molecules), and recovers the energy in a useful form to drive the processes of life. A malfunctioning engine imparts less energy but also creates toxic by-products as a result of incomplete combustion”. 
This is oxidative damage.
Severe stress is often blamed for fatigue, and it certainly can be the cause or a contributing factor. However you need specific things to do, and not do, for a plan to help lower stress to be effective. We provide this to you. If your stress hormones such as cortisol are through the roof, your sleep will inevitably be terrible. We know how to help you lower it so you can finally have refreshing sleep. Sleep is critical for wellbeing as your body does a lot of its repair and rejuvenation work during sleep.
Other people have adrenal burn out – a bit like a child who was overly excited and stayed up too late, they’re now “wired and tired”. As an adult, if you have adrenal burn out you’re probably running more on willpower than anything else, as your adrenals are exhausted. We have ways of supporting your adrenals (and other hormones) naturally and effectively to restore balance. More importantly we have specific tests that help clarify which situation you are in, high or low cortisol. (As the treatment is totally different).
Your hormones impact everything that happens in your body. To overcome fatigue and achieve true health, you need your hormones appropriately balanced and optimised. (You can read more about this on our hormone balance).
If you have fatigue, some forms of movement can be helpful but exercise can actually make things worse. The way to fix your fatigue therefore often involves a range of targeted physical, biochemical and psychological treatments.
Biochemically for example, if you have excess copper in your system you will be converting dopamine to noradrenaline (Norepinephrine) too rapidly. This will lead to feeling anxious, restless, and mentally drained. (You can read more about this on our mental health page.) Thankfully we can help safely lower your copper so you can get your life back.
Consider a plant that is not growing well.
It needs sunlight and water and the right soil nutrients. If it is lacking in one of these, or has too much, or has some chronic infection, the plant won't be healthy. You're the same. There are fundamental things you need to be healthy, and you can't compromise on those. Giving a plant enough water but ignoring how much sunlight and soil it needs will never result in the plant being healthy. This is why a single supplement or medication rarely fixes fatigue. You need a holistic approach, customised to you.
At Evergreen Doctors we restore wellness. We help get your vitality back both mentally and physically.
If you would like to discuss your personal experience and have a tailor-made solution for your fatigue symptoms, book in with one of our functional medicine doctors at Evergreen Doctors today.