While it may be tempting to drink a coffee or two every few hours to keep yourself awake…
…fatigue is a much bigger problem than just being a bit tired from lack of sleep. Since estrogen helps regulate your cell’s energy levels, the drop in estrogen that you experience during the menopause actually reduces your body’s natural energy levels. This causes that constant feeling of weakness and tiredness, both mentally and physically. Fortunately, there are many ways to fight fatigue. By making small, incremental changing to your day-to-day habits, you can go a long way to feeling more energised, more awake, and more alert.
- Drink less caffeine
It may sound counterintuitive, but caffeine doesn’t help your long-term fatigue problems. Caffeine may be helpful in the short-term to wake you up in the morning, but it doesn’t fight against menopause-related fatigue, and so it won’t do anything to help you through the day. In fact, too much caffeine can actually overstimulate you and leave you feeling more tired later in the day! It’s best to stay away from caffeine or at least reduce your intake to avoid getting either dependent or slowed down in the long-run.
- Eat the right nutrients
It’s been said over and over again, but that’s because it’s true: eating smaller meals more frequently (every 3 to 4 hours) as opposed to 2-3 large meals a day is much more beneficial. This is true for your fatigue too! But of course, it depends what you eat. First, focus on macronutrients, which are fats, proteins, and carbs. Now, that doesn’t mean run to your nearest store for doughnuts and biscuits. There are healthy fats, proteins, and carbs that will keep you energised and active, without experiencing a sugar crash. Aim for foods like salmon, tuna, avocados and coconut oil. Next, focus on micronutrients, like vitamins and nutrients (think fruits and vegetables). Little snacks and meals through the day will keep your body and mind going while keeping your metabolism running smoothly.
Even if it’s quite honestly the last thing you’d want to do when you’re tired, exercising regularly can really help with long-term fatigue. While any kind of exercise is good, if you’re trying to combat fatigue, yoga is especially good for you. It’ll also help lower your stress-levels (which is very detrimental to your chronic fatigue) and help you stay fit and healthy! Studies show that even once-a-week yoga classes can help clear your mind, boost your confidence, and increase your energy. Read more on motivation to workout here.
- Develop a good night-time routine
As we said, chronic fatigue is not the same as being tired from a lack of sleep. However, if you’re going through chronic fatigue, the last thing you need to add on top of that is poor sleep. To make sure you have a great night’s sleep, take your pre-sleep time seriously. Be sure you’re not looking at a screen (TV, phone, computer, etc) before bed and be sure to clear your mind. Find a relaxing activity you can do (stretching, essential oil baths, a nice read) and make sure you give yourself enough time to do it. This will, again, help with your stress-levels, so you’ll wake up feeling more energised than ever before!
- Try colour therapy
A fun, little way to add a bit of energy to your day is trying out colour therapy. Studies show that warm colours like reds, oranges, and yellows are more energising than cooler tones like blues, greens, and purples. This can be anything from wearing more warm-coloured clothing, or using coloured lightbulbs to change the atmosphere in a room! While colour therapy is likely not effective enough to fight your fatigue alone, it can be an easy and fun trick to consider when trying to get your energy levels up.
Overall, it’s important to remember that chronic fatigue shouldn’t be the norm. You don’t have to feel like it’s a new state of life, or something you have to accept. Chronic fatigue can affect all aspects of your life, from socialising to work, so it’s important to fight it! It’ll be a challenge at first, since even finding the energy to fight fatigue may seem impossible, but once you get into the routine and find what works for you for the long-run, you’ll be able to get through your day much more brightly and happily than before. That’s worth it!
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