Dr. John Day
Dr. Day is a cardiologist specializing in heart rhythm abnormalities at St. Mark’s Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah. He graduated from Johns Hopkins Medical School and completed his residency and fellowships in cardiology and cardiac electrophysiology at Stanford University. He is the former president of the Heart Rhythm Society and the Utah chapter of the American College of Cardiology.
10 Reasons Why You Might Be So Tired
In the clinic this past week, many of you shared your struggles with fatigue and a desire to understand why you’re feeling so tired. Drawing from my years of research and clinical experience, I want to shed light on the 10 common reasons why you might be experiencing low energy levels.
1. Your Sleep Might Be Off
Quality sleep is the foundation of boundless energy. Sleep apnea, nighttime awakenings, and even nocturia (frequent urination at night) can disrupt your rest. If you snore or suspect sleep apnea, seek evaluation. Sleep apnea dramatically increases your risk of atrial fibrillation and may even shorten your life.
Also, consider the timing of diuretic medications, and if necessary, consult a urologist for urinary issues. For my patients taking “water pills,” I encourage them to take these medications in the morning so that the effects are gone by bedtime.
Maintain a consistent sleep schedule to promote better sleep quality. If you can train your body to go to bed and awake at roughly the same time each day your energy levels should increase.
2. You May Not Be Exercising Enough
Believe it or not, exercise is a potent energy booster. Regular physical activity enhances mood, aids in weight management, and significantly improves sleep. Indeed, the very best “energy pill” I can offer my patients is regular daily exercise.
I encourage my patients to gradually increase their activity levels, aiming for 10,000 daily steps and at least one hour of moderate-intensity exercise. And for my patients who can achieve these exercise goals they all sleep better at night.
Everyone can do something for regular daily exercise. Even my elderly patients confined to a wheelchair can still do wheelchair aerobics, yoga, or workout with arm weights.
3. You Might Be Eating the Wrong Foods
Your diet plays a crucial role in energy levels. Processed foods, prepared foods, eating out, sugary snacks, and refined carbohydrates can zap your vitality.
Fuel your body with energy-rich foods, with a special focus on vegetables and avoiding sugary and highly processed items. To optimize your energy levels, eat as naturally and clean as you possibly can and avoid any foods that spike your blood glucose levels like bread, pastries, or snack foods.
4. You May Not Be Drinking Enough Water
Dehydration can leave you feeling tired. Aim to drink enough water daily until your urine has a slight yellow tinge. Many find that sipping water throughout the day helps combat fatigue.
5. You Might Be Too Stressed
Stress is an energy thief. If you’re juggling multiple responsibilities, look for ways to reduce stress. Explore stress-relief techniques such as yoga, meditation, prayer, nature walks, or regular exercise to find what works best for you.
6. You Might Be on too Many Medications
Certain medications, especially beta-blockers, can cause fatigue. Review your medication list with your physician to identify any potential culprits and explore alternatives.
While you should never stop a medication on your own, there may be natural approaches to get you off some of your pills. For example, many of my patients have found that by losing 10 to 20 pounds they may be able to get off their blood pressure or diabetes medications. Likewise, for my patients suffering from atrial fibrillation, an ablation procedure may allow they to get off their beta-blockers and other fatigue inducing antiarrhythmic medications.
7. You May Have a Medical Condition that isn’t Being Optimally Treated
Atrial fibrillation, heart failure, thyroid problems, anemia, depression, etc. can all contribute to fatigue. Consult your doctor for testing and appropriate treatment to regain your energy.
For my patients suffering from AFib, many find that if we can keep their hearts in normal sinus rhythm their energy levels improve. And for those who may have been out of rhythm for too long to get back into normal sinus rhythm, often just controlling their atrial fibrillation heart rate significantly improves energy levels.
8. You Might Be Carrying Too Much Weight
Excess weight can weigh you down, both physically and energetically. Many of my patients have experienced a surge in energy as they shed those extra pounds. Also, many of your health conditions or medications may go away if you can drop a few pounds.
9. You’re Smoking or Might Be Drinking Too Much Alcohol
Both smoking and excessive alcohol consumption can drain your energy and hinder sleep quality. Seek guidance from your healthcare provider if you’re looking to quit or reduce these habits.
10. You May Have a Caffeine Problem
While caffeine can provide a temporary energy boost, excessive or late-day consumption can disrupt sleep patterns. Be mindful of your caffeine intake and aim to limit it, especially in the hours leading up to bedtime.
Your energy levels are a valuable asset, and it’s within your power to rejuvenate them. By addressing these ten common factors, you can take proactive steps toward a more energized, vibrant, and fulfilling life.
About the Blog Photo
When our family needs a recharge, Lake Powell is our sanctuary for exercise, de-stressing, and quality family time. The real magic? In most spots, there’s no cell signal, giving us a much-needed technology ‘detox.’
The information in this blog article is for educational purposes and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always consult with a qualified healthcare provider regarding any medical concerns, and never disregard or delay seeking medical advice based on information in this article.
Disclaimer Policy: This website is intended to give general information and does not provide medical advice. This website does not create a doctor-patient relationship between you and Dr. John Day. If you have a medical problem, immediately contact your healthcare provider. Information on this website is not intended to diagnose or treat any condition. Dr. John Day is not responsible for any losses, damages or claims that may result from your medical decisions.