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Chronic Fatigue

How can I combat Chronic Fatigue?

Question

Twelve years ago I was diagnosed with ME. I have gradually got better but I still suffer from disabling fatigue I'm prone to colds and sore throats and have had so many antibiotics over the years that my immune system doesn't function properly.

Answer

ME - myalgic encephalomyelitis – comes under the umbrella of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS); 20 per cent of CFS sufferers are diagnosed with ME. It is also known as post viral syndrome because the condition is usually triggered by a virus, commonly Epstein-Bar virus. Other contributory factors are: neck problems leading to a poor supply of blood to the brain tissue, nutritional deficiency yeast and other fungal overgrowth (candida),also stress, hormonal problems, chronic sinusitis, anaemia, low blood pressure, insomnia and geopathic stress (caused by living near high-powered electric cables).

ME patients are often so debilitated that they can't walk or do anything that involves exertion for more than a few hours, if that many are bedridden. The body experiences total power failure. Brain capacity is low, with memory and concentration impaired, hormonal function is disrupted, reflexes are sluggish and sleep completely disturbed, as in jet lag. Symptoms, in order of prevalence, include fatigue, headaches, depression, sleep disturbance, extreme muscle ache, short-term memory loss, sore glands, lack of concentration, digestive problems, palpitations and panic attacks.

Some doctors believe ME is a psychiatric condition and prescribe antidepressants or treat it as a circulatory problem. Neither is helpful. I recommend a strict lifestyle therapy, including a nutritious, easily absorbed diet with four small meals a day. Eat mushy foods such as mashed potato and rice, as well as high protein minced meat and chicken. Blood pressure is usually very low, so foods high in protein are good. Food should be well cooked, so that it is easily digestible and does not drain the body further, and the nutrients in the food are absorbed better.

Avoid food products containing yeast and fungal products, including bread, cakes and biscuits, mushrooms, blue cheese and vinegar, as well as all sweet foods, fruit, except for apples and pears, citrus juices, milk and cheese. Live goat's milk yogurt is beneficial, however, because it puts back good bacteria into the gut Organic chicken or lambs soup, with vegetables, is very energy-giving. Boil lamb marrow bones for two hours with ginger, barley and a touch of salt, and use this stock for vegetable soup.

Take care of your muscles by massaging with special oils. Use organics sesame oil , which is rich in vitamin D or Dr Ali's Lifestyle Oil, Rub all over your body, particularly the neck and spine area which is often tight I also recommend infusions of nutrients, especially vitamin C and magnesium. These must be given by a qualified doctor or nurse.

Yoga is an ideal exercise system for ME sufferers because it demands very little energy), from the body yet produces a surplus.

Over the past ten years I have taken expeditions to the Himalayas. Walking at this altitude gives huge benefits and the whole experience builds up energy. When you are able to feel yourself as an elemental being instead of a machine, it takes away the inertia and depressive thoughts associated with ME. Antidepressants will not create the same experience.

Once your body's energy production is restored, all your functions will normalise.

Here are my suggestions:

Walk Tall

Maintaining the correct posture is essential in keeping the spine aligned. The majority of abnormalities in the discs and joint of the spine arise from bad posture, which causes abnormal tension in certain groups of muscles and ultimately weakens them. The Alexander technique is an excellent method of posture therapy. While sitting or standing, you should feel as if your head is being held upright by an upward stretching force.

To experience this, push your shoulders back to a comfortable position (you should not feel any discomfort at all) and raise your chin until you feel the release of tension in the neck muscles at the back At this point allow your neck to float upwards a bit until the neck and shoulder muscles are free of any strain or tension. Practise this several times a day.

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