Feeling tired all the time? Struggling to get out of bed in the morning and finding yourself yawning uncontrollably all afternoon? If so, you can at least take comfort in the fact that you are not alone. Market research giant Mintel says that the sheer pace of modern life leaves one in three of us feeling permanently exhausted.
Other sources have conducted their own surveys and yielded even more shocking results. A survey from a Channel Islands-based vitamin company showed that 97 percent of respondents said they felt tired “most of the time.” And it’s not just a case of those taking (or selling) vitamins having their own agenda. Records from the UK’s doctors show that 10 percent of GP visits are to discuss tiredness.
So what is causing our constant fatigue? And if it really is a natural consequence of modern life, what can we do to combat it?
Get more exercise
In HG Wells’ The War of the Worlds, the Martians had become technologically advanced and were mentally our superiors, but their bodies had practically wasted away. 125 years later, it begins to look like a cautionary vision of the future.
The trouble is, when you feel tired, the last thing you feel like doing is exercising. But regular exercise gets your vital organs working more efficiently, delivering oxygen and nutrients around the body. A study by the University of Georgia examined adults who were sedentary but in otherwise good health and set them on a routine of light exercise for 20 minutes three times a week. Within six weeks, they were feeling more energised and less tired.
Boost your serotonin
Serotonin is known as the “happy molecule” as it is associated with relieving stress and improving mood. However, it is also responsible for regulating a number of the body’s natural cycles. Low serotonin will not just leave you feeling down, it can also affect your concentration and sleep patterns. Regular use of natural products to boost serotonin will help restore your natural rhythm, and will also make you feel more upbeat.
It might sound obvious, but if you feel tired all the time, maybe you are not sleeping well. The reason people overlook this is they mistake quantity for quality. We go to bed at 11PM, get up at 7AM and think we’ve had eight hours, so it’s certainly not lack of sleep that’s the problem. Just rewind a second, though.
Do you really sleep through the night, or do you have periods of wakefulness? If so, you might be missing out on the REM sleep that your body needs and getting by on what is termed junk sleep.
One of the biggest causes of junk sleep is our obsession with technology. Looking at any sort of screen before sleep causes brainwave patterns that effectively “wake the brain up” when it needs to be going into shut down mode. The solution is plain: Switch the phone, laptop and TV off, and settle down with a good old-fashioned audio book to read you a story and gently lull you to sleep.