Fatigue and low energy are common complaints. But in spite of getting a good amount of sleep, many people are chronically tired.
Some of the first causes to be considered are those we can fix on our own, namely our diet (large, fatty or sugary meals are associated with fatigue), exercise (people who exercise regularly report less fatigue than those who do not) and quitting smoking, which is related to lung diseases and cancers.
Another cause is mental health problems, most commonly anxiety and depression. Ruling out cancer, cardiac and respiratory issues, a doctor can evaluate and treat as necessary.
Other conditions that can cause fatigue:
– Endocrinological (hormonal): Diabetes, especially hypoglycemia (low glucose), hypothyroid (low thyroid hormone) and low cortisol level (adrenal insufficiency).
– Hematological: Anemia, or having a low level of healthy red blood cells, causes fatigue. Infectious – acute or chronic infections, such as TB, Lyme disease and hepatitis.
Dr. Zachary Levine is an assistant professor in the faculty of medicine at McGill University Health Centre and medical correspondent for AM740 (a ZoomerMedia property).