Feel Wiped Out? Fatigue, Low Attention, Low Enjoyment, Less Life

Cat FatigueFatigue can stealthily invade your life.

Fatigue can be a health problem that eats your life’s lunch while you remain unsure of what is happening to you. Your drive and ambition are often still alive, but you can find that opportunities to do anything about them are somehow passing you by. You may find yourself rationing out your energy, avoiding difficult or stressful situations and craving time to just do nothing.

Do you remember “stamina?” This is that extra push you can make appear out of nowhere to get over the top hiking that big hill, finishing off that presentation before deadline or dipping into a deep well of patience to parent a teenager. Stamina is often the first thing to disappear with “stealth fatigue.”

Has your life become about just making it through the day and the week? Are you thinking, “I don’t think I’m fatigued, but I still struggle to make it through the week—and I don’t have much of that ‘stamina stuff’ left, either.”?  If so, you may be an example of stealth fatigue. Don’t let your life wind down because of this!

You’re not alone. Forty-three percent of U.S. workers believe they are too tired to function safely at work, according to a new report from the National Safety Council.

Your Lack of Energy May Be Caused by Something Else

People with stealth fatigue commonly believe that their problem is mental or environmental. “I’m just not excited about my life right now, so I don’t have a lot of energy.” Or “my schedule is killing me!” However, my observation is that most of these people have a physical problem that is causing the fatigue and that they are mistakenly blaming it on their mood or schedule.

I say this because when we handle the correct physical problems, the previously exhausted and burned out person starts a business, adopts a baby, gets married or starts training to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro. Just yesterday a patient who has only been at the clinic for two weeks told me she had so much energy that she was starting a cottage industry in her kitchen making fruit jerky.

Fatigue is often caused by “adrenal fatigue.” Adrenals are hormone glands that control many functions in your body… like how much energy you have. When they become fatigued, you can be exhausted in the afternoons, can’t wake up in the mornings, wake up in the middle of the night and can’t get to sleep at bedtime.

Fatigue can also be caused by thyroid problems. Your thyroid is a hormone gland that controls your metabolism and the energy production of every cell in your body. If your thyroid slows down, you can be tired all the time, constipated, have foggy-thinking, constant weight gain, dry skin and hair loss.

Fatigue can be from a long-term infection that your body can’t get rid of. There are many types of these, and often you’ll have joint pain or other symptoms as well.

There are many problems that can cause poor sleep, and this can lead to fatigue. Being overweight can cause sleep apnea, preventing sound sleep. Heart problems, hormone imbalances and nutritional deficiencies can prevent sound sleep as well.

How to Regain Your Energy

If you found yourself in the descriptions above, or if you feel backed-off from life, trying to ration out your activity to avoid running out of gas… here’s what to do:

  1. Investigate: Find out if you have a “stealth fatigue” problem. Become aware of all the things you aren’t willing to do or attempt just because thinking about them exhausts you. Spot the choices you make where you sit on the sidelines instead of playing the game. Catch yourself making excuses for doing less, especially those that use age, fitness, mental state and schedule as reasons (there are grandfathers out there doing triathlons, you know).
  2. Decide: Get a clear picture of how your life could be if you were attacking it full tilt instead of hiding from it. Drop all ideas about how you can’t do things, and instead refocus on what you’d have to change and correct to become alive and energetic again.
  3. OK! If you’ve done #1 and #2, you are ready to find out what’s making you tired and start really living again. There are several ways you can go about getting tested, but you must start with the idea that you are looking for a cause of your fatigue that EXISTS, not looking to SEE if it exists. Go back to #1 if you need more convincing.
  4. Conventional medical doctors aren’t well equipped to find sources of fatigue (which is one reason so many people have it) and are particularly unable to do much about most causes that they might find. Holistic and functional medicine doctors are much better at this. You want lab tests for adrenals, thyroid, anemia, infections, etc. With the right doctor, it won’t take long till you’re looking at the physical cause of your life slowing down. It’s a great feeling, second only to getting your energy back.

The Real Danger

We life in an age of epidemic chronic health problems. More than half the population is suffering from digestive, heart, immune, and mental problems that never go away. Blood pressure, diabetes, weight and pain get treated with drugs that just manage the symptoms (somewhat) while the cause of the problems remain untreated and continues to make the person worse and worse.

Fatigue is just one of these symptoms, and it has the power to stealthily destroy your life.

The real danger is in the fact that SO MANY PEOPLE have these problems that it looks normal! Your doctor expects you to develop chronic conditions—he thinks it would be weird if you were healthy.

My advice: DON’T SETTLE. You can be healthy, happy, productive and a huge help to your family friends and the world in general. Do NOT let your health slow or stop your boundless creativity and joy of living, even if everyone you know is dragging around.

Want Help?

I’d be happy to get you started on fixing your energy. If you’ll fill out a health assessment on this website, I’ll go over the clues with you on a free phone consult (limited to greater Atlanta area). This way you can take action on your fatigue problem right now!

 

Do You Feel Like Crap? (Functional Bowel Disease)

Functional Bowel Disease EmojiHow many important life events have you had compromised or just ruined by digestive problems? Because you just hurt too much, you felt too bad or couldn’t stray far from a restroom. These problems are termed “Functional Bowel Disease” or “FBD” in conventional medicine.

What about the mental effects caused by indigestion, constipation, diarrhea, bloating, cramping and the combination of all of these known as “Irritable Bowel Syndrome” (IBS)? These all cause mental and physical lethargy… so you just don’t feel up for much of anything.

Now I have something staggering to tell you, especially if you’re a woman:

In the US, over 66 MILLION people—one in five—suffer from these problems… and 70% of them are women. That means that 35% of women in the US have these problems.  66 million is greater than the entire population of the United Kingdom. That’s a lot of people.[i]

With a problem this common, it’s not surprising that people frequently seek help from their doctors. Medically, these symptoms are known as Functional Bowel Disease because no physical cause can be found for them. Every year, over $8 BILLION is spent on medical costs for these problems, and FBD is one of the top 10 reasons people see their primary care doctors. Also, patients diagnosed with FBD spend on average 74% more in direct healthcare costs than other people.

But…

There’s no known cause for these problems. Treatment is limited to mostly time-proven remedies to reduce symptoms which work on a hit-or-miss basis (this is something you’ll agree with wholeheartedly if you are a sufferer of Functional Bowel Disease).

Honestly, I wasn’t aware of much of this information until I started researching for this blog. In my practice, I see mostly severe patients; people don’t come to me just for Functional Bowel Disease symptoms. However, most of my patients have these symptoms in addition to all their other more severe problems. We handle diarrhea, constipation, abdominal cramping, bloating, reflux, heartburn, stomach upset, nausea, etc. at the beginning of most patient treatment programs. These symptoms are usually gone or mostly handled in a few weeks, no big deal, so I was taken aback by the statistics I’m quoting here.

I’m just amazed: the public is spending 8 billion annually on what is honestly simple, easy to handle basic issues. I commented to my office manager that if the 66 million sufferers of Functional Bowel Disease all were given one specific whole-food supplement we use frequently it would probably solve the symptoms of about half of them.

Symptom Relief is Temporary: How to Solve the Actual Problem?

Most Functional Bowel Disease symptoms can be quickly relieved with basic food supplementation and some diet changes. But these symptoms are just evidence of underlying health problems. When I’m doing an initial consultation visit it’s very common that the patient’s severe problems began with simple digestive issues:

  • “At first, I just took Tums every time I had heartburn.
  • “Then, after a couple of years I had to prop up my bed, because I couldn’t sleep lying down flat anymore.
  • “Then I had to stop eating after about 6 o’clock.
  • “Then I was diagnosed with GERD and ulcers of the esophagus.
  • “Then I was put on a PPI drug (PPI is Proton Pump Inhibitor, a drug that reduces stomach acid).
  • “Two years later, I started having heart problems, which I’ve found may be related to my body not absorbing minerals because of the PPI drug. This might also be a reason my memory and concentration has become so poor.”

The underlying cause of digestive symptoms can be sex hormone problems (remember that Functional Bowel Disease symptoms mainly occur in women?), allergies, mental stress, thyroid problems, adrenal problems, liver problems… many, many possibilities. This is the reason that conventional medicine only treats the symptoms: they have no training or tools to discover the underlying causes, and no effective treatment techniques to apply if they did know a cause.

In almost all cases, Functional Bowel Disease problems can’t be cured by a drug. These problems are termed “chronic conditions” that can only be managed with (often) lifelong drugs but never cured.

[If you want information on how to actually solve chronic health problems, read this short booklet]

So, I find myself in an odd position of knowing what to do to solve the horrific digestive problems of 66 million people… most of whom think their problems can’t be solved and just keep taking drugs to try and take the edge off.

It’s a strange situation.

If you would like some help:

Call my clinic at 770.612.1100. We are always happy to talk to you and offer any help or advice that we can.

Here is a link to request a new patient appointment


[i] All statistics are from the Center for Disease Control website.

Stop the Madness of Hormone Problems

Hormone ProblemsIf hormone problems have ever made you ill, you know the madness I’m talking about.  If you have ever been sad for so many reasons and for no reason at all, you understand the madness.  If you are a young girl or woman troubled by extremely painful periods, missing hours or days of your life in a haze of pain and pain killers, you know the madness.  If you have hot flashes and night sweats, feeling heat rising off your body during that meeting at work or waking up soaking wet and having to change your pajamas and sheets, you know about the madness.  If you suffer from chronic skin problems and food allergies, or intolerances that cause stomach pain and nausea or other discomforts every time you eat, you know about the madness.  If you have ever become very angry at the drop of a hat and screamed at those you love and then later, with much shame and regret, realized it was really a trivial matter, then you too understand this madness.  Insomnia, exhaustion, mood changes, constant weight gain, depression, and anxiety are all part of the madness.

The madness is often connected to our hormones.  Those little microscopic amounts of substance can give us the time of our lives or make a ruin of them.

Hormone Problems often get Started Early

The beginning of the female cycle in adolescence is for many the start of a life of stress, pain, depression or worse.  Over the course of my practice I have seen many women begin their adult lives with hormone problems and other health issues that have never been resolved and have only worsened over time — sometimes for life, often because of the very solutions they have been offered.  Most of these early onset conditions, and their underlying concerns, were never diagnosed correctly. These young women have either been offered no solutions or solutions that include the birth control pill to “regulate” their cycle, or anti-depressants to “fix” their moods.  Women come to me in their 40s and 50s on anti-depressants and anti-anxiety meds, which they’ve been taking since their teen years. As a result, they have been unable to stop using them because the root cause of their hormonal problems or other health condition was never found.

The young girl who was once miserable with a flooding cycle and horrible cramps is now a nervous, anxious woman in her 30s or 40s, exhausted and stressed, possibly diagnosed with thyroid nodules, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome or other hormonal problems.  This woman is likely taking anti-depressants and has often turned to other drugs and chemicals to survive.  She may smoke marijuana or drink wine at night to sleep and then drink copious amounts of coffee or take caffeine pills or drink energy drinks to be able to get through her busy schedule.

Or, as one of my patients described it, she had to “Elvis it” to keep going. To her, that meant alcohol at night to sleep and caffeine all day to stay awake. This woman was in graduate school trying to keep pace with her schoolwork and not understanding her exhaustion. She expressed dismay at how her body seemed to betray her when she needed it the most.

Often women in their 30s have young children and are exhausted by work and home responsibilities. These women also know that if they don’t get it all done no one else will.  The child rearing phase of life can be challenging, and many of the women I meet do not know there is help available. It is not normal to feel completely wrung dry all the time — this should be the time of your life!

The beginnings of more serious health issues have already taken root by the time you reach your 30s and 40s.

By now you may have struggled for years with nagging health concerns, doing your best to self-medicate or trying to ignore your growing health issues.

By the time they reach their 50s or 60s, many women have had a hysterectomy because of fibroids or continued heavy menstrual flow, leading their doctors to determine that their female parts are no longer useful and should be removed! Women are told they are in menopause now and do not really need these organs anymore, or other such questionable logic. This often leads to synthetic hormone replacement therapy, which carries its own health risks and complications.  For some women, this time of life can be fraught with ill health.  It is not uncommon for someone to be prescribed two or three blood pressure meds and possibly a statin drug for high cholesterol along with an anti-depressant or anti-anxiety drug.

This same woman could be battling pre-diabetes, high blood pressure or a full-blown case of diabetes, with stubborn weight that now won’t ever let go.  She is often exhausted, hot flashing, experiencing insomnia and facing even more serious health issues like osteoporosis and heart disease, often because of unbalanced or deficient female hormones.

If You Found Yourself Described Above…

There are answers to hormone problems at every stage of life. These aren’t medical “take a drug” or “remove a body part” solutions. The answers lie in understanding what has caused your body to become unbalanced and unhealthy and in doing the work to help it to recover.

One of the first actions I take with my patients with hormone problems is to have them become informed on their bodies and their conditions. If you have hormone problems, YOU will do most of the work to recover your own health. If you’re doing this blindly, on a “just tell me what to do” basis, you may have limited results.

Your Hormnes In Harmony BookFor this reason, I wrote a book for women who have hormone problems (or want to avoid them!). The book is easy to read, and:

  • Clarifies all the common medical diagnoses and other information you may have been exposed to but not fully understood.
  • Shows you how your body is designed in a beautiful way that can give you great joy—rather than the negative image so many women have of their bodies.
  • Teaches you the most important basics of how to be a woman and stay healthy, or how to recover your health if you need to.

You can pick up an ebook or paperback from Amazon here, or drop by the clinic and I’ll autograph a copy for you.

I have devoted most of my life to researching about and treating women with debilitating hormone problems. If you are suffering from this kind of problem, please contact me and I’ll help you in any way I can to get you back to the healthy, happy, beautiful life you should be experiencing.

Nervous System Switching: Health Damage from Tattoos

Nervous system switching from tattoosNervous System “Switching:” The Stealth Health Disorder

Nervous system switching isn’t taught in most medical schools, so your doctor has never heard of it. However, it’s quite common and can have a devastating but hidden effect on your health.

It’s usually caused by tattoos and scars. And you can probably fix it yourself (with a little help)!

What Symptoms Does Nervous System Switching Cause?

Switching causes the electrical orientation of your nervous system to “switch” back and forth from positive to negative. This can happen once every few minutes to once every few milliseconds.

Some common signs of nervous system switching:

  • Person suddenly gets worse or better from a health problem with no apparent reason and may switch back and forth between recovering and relapsing.
  • A treatment, remedy, supplement or drug that was working to help a person heal suddenly becomes ineffective.
  • Some drugs may have opposite effects (for example, coffee puts a person to sleep).
  • Drugs may work in extremely large or small doses only.
  • Extreme sensitivity to drugs.
  • Person has health conditions and they just can’t get well.

What Causes Nervous System Switching?

Your body runs itself using a special dedicated nervous system called the autonomic nervous system (“ANS”). This is a private network that you have no control over. It handles your heartrate, digestion, immune system, etc.

Most of the nerves in the ANS are right under your skin. In fact, there are so many nerves under your skin that if you took away the rest of your body and just left your ANS, you’d still be recognizable.

If you cut through your skin, you damage nerve cells which must then heal. If the cut doesn’t heal completely, it leaves a scar. Sometimes a damaged nerve cell inside a scar won’t heal and will partially block a nerve path. This blockage can store up electrical energy from the nervous system and then suddenly release it. This sudden charge into your ANS can flip the polarity (positive or negative electrical charge) of the entire nervous system for an instant.

Because nerve cells heal so slowly, this condition can go on for many years. The scars can be from surgeries, accidents, tattoos or other causes. If you have several scars, often only one or two will be causing the problems, so it’s important to test to find out which one(s) are involved.

There are other causes for nervous system switching that are much less common than scars. A person can also switch from overwhelming physical stress caused by infections, toxins and even dead teeth.

How to Test for Nervous System Switching

The most accurate way to test for switching is a lab test called Heart Rate Variability or “HRV” usually used for nervous system research. Your autonomic nervous system controls your heartrate beat to beat, depending on environmental factors both inside and outside of your body. By measuring the variability of your heart, beat to beat to beat, and comparing this measurement between standing and lying down, it’s possible to determine the condition of your ANS. The test takes less than 10 minutes and is extremely accurate.

Once an HRV test has shown that a person has nervous system switching, the cause must be determined. The most accurate way to do this is using another test of the autonomic nervous system called Autonomic Response Evaluation, or “ARE.” This test uses muscle reflexes to find very exact areas of stress in the body. With ARE, it’s possible to narrow down the cause of switching to a specific scar or tattoo or find another reason such as toxins.

Because it’s so quick and inexpensive to test for nervous system switching, it’s easy to work on the problem (see below) and then retest to see if the switching problem has resolved.

How to Help Your Body Stop Switching

Short Term: To temporarily stop switching (usually up to a few days) the scar can be lasered for about 5 to 10 minutes with a “cold” laser. This is a special laser using bio frequencies (600 and 700 nanometers). I use these lasers all the time in the clinic, and they can be purchased for a few hundred dollars.

Long Term: Repeatedly treating the scar with vitamin E (I use wheat germ oil) will eventually break down the scar tissue and assist the damaged nerve cells to heal. I usually tell patients to rub the oil on their scar twice a day for at least 3 months.

Both these techniques are effective on tattoos as well.

When other stresses are causing nervous system switching, more precise and specific treatment techniques need to be used.

Medical Treatment Focuses on Treating Symptoms

Because doctors have no training to test for underlying causes, there are untold numbers of people with ongoing health conditions caused by problems medical doctors don’t know to look for. Nervous system switching is a great example of this.

Find out more

Here is a webpage with a short summary of what I do.

Here is a free booklet with the story of how I developed my techniques and how those techniques work (very practical information).

Here is a link to a book I wrote about women’s hormones in every stage of their lives (on Amazon)

Here is a link to a book I wrote about my treatment technique (on Amazon)

Here is a link to a book my office manager wrote on staying healthy long-term (on Amazon)

Here is a link to a free online health survey that you can submit for a phone consultation on your health

Here is a link to request a new patient appointment

If you have a health problem with no solution other than to manage the symptoms, I can recommend that you stop accepting this and start researching a real solution. In many, many cases there will be a way back to health for you.

I wish you the best of luck, and offer you any help or advice I can.