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The Reason Why You’re Always Tired Even If You’ve Got Enough Sleep

The Reason Why You’re Always Tired Even If You’ve Got Enough Sleep

Tiredness can be a symptom of modern times. Working long hours and juggling responsibilities can stop us from getting our recommended 8 hours of sleep a night and can lead us to feeling fatigued and tired. But what if you are getting enough sleep each night yet still spending the day lacking energy, feeling drained and generally exhausted? It can seem frustrating when you make the effort to get your full forty winks but still feel continuously run down during the day. The problem could lie in the quality of sleep rather than the amount. There are many factors that can affect how well we sleep at night so even though you think you have slept well, if you’re still tired during the day, chances are that you haven’t.

Many studies have been conducted to show how quality of sleep affects our well-being. Feeling tired all the time can considerably lower our quality of life, stopping us from enjoying day-to-day moments and resulting in feeling moody and irritable. If you’re wondering why you are still suffering from tiredness despite getting a full-night’s sleep then here are some possible reasons that could explain it.

Not Enough Exercise

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    We spend a lot of time at our jobs and if that means sitting at a desk for nearly 8 hours that’s a lot of time sitting down. Having a sedentary lifestyle can affect our body and mind in more ways than we imagine. It’s not just unhealthy in terms of putting on weight but being sedentary causes you to actually feel more tired and sluggish. It can also affect your sleep because your body hasn’t expelled enough energy to produce the quality sleep you need.

    You may think establishing an exercise routine will just add tiredness and fatigue to your day but taking up some form of exercise rejuvenates the body promoting better quality sleep. Whether it’s in the morning, during your lunch break or in the evening, a good daily workout will increase your body’s need for sleep in a productive and natural way.

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    Make sure you take walking breaks throughout the day so that you break up the amount of time you sit down. Getting your body moving will increase the chances of your sleep quality improving.

    Dehydration

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      How much water do you drink a day? Dehydration contributes greatly to feeling tired. Many people are unaware of how little water they drink throughout the day because they spend their liquid intake on sugared drinks and caffeine that aren’t as beneficial as water. Dehydration has a detrimental effect on our body. Our organs don’t work as efficiently due to the heart sending oxygen at a much slower pace resulting in tiredness and feelings of exhaustion. Make sure you drink 8-10 glasses a day avoiding sugary drinks as these can cause unneeded energy dips.

      Since our brain is made up of 85% water, it goes to show just how essential maintaining hydration is for optimum sleep quality. Increasing your daily intake should help keep your energy up for longer during the day and allow your brain to work at its best during the night so your tiredness is lessened all-round.

      Having A Poor Diet

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        Having a poor diet can really affect how you feel throughout the day. If you find yourself reaching for the high-fat or high-carb foods then these could be causing you to feel more tired than you should. Eating a healthy, balanced diet can make a huge difference to our mind and body and using nutrition to combat exhaustion could be the key. There have been many studies that shows the effect that our diets have on the duration and quality of our sleep so it’s extremely important to consider your diet if you suffer from fatigue.

        There are many foods that promote long, lasting energy including iron-rich red meat, whole grains, nuts, green leafy vegetables and dried fruit. It’s important to get a varied diet that’s low in sugar and high in fibre and good-energy nutrients.

        Eating a healthy breakfast to start the day is essential to combat tiredness. Without breakfast our body goes through a long period of starvation and causes the body to use up its energy resources all the more quickly. So make time for a healthy, energy-rich breakfast like porridge, eggs, wholemeal toast or sugar-free cereals to give yourself a boost. Eating at regular intervals throughout the day will prevent further dips in energy so sensible eating is important in maintaining an optimum level of needed energy.

        Depression Or Stress

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          Another cause for tiredness could be depression or underlying stress. Sometimes we don’t always realise that we are suffering from these conditions and we only see the signs as feeling fatigued and lack-lustred and therefore low motivation. Maybe consider if there is something underlying that may be causing you to feel this way. Is there something that’s causing you more stress than you realize? Have you been feeling low and emotional? They could all be perfectly normal but if these feelings are prolonged then it might be wise to consider speaking to someone.

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          Taking up exercise and adjusting your diet can help with both stress and depression as well as relaxation methods such as mediation. It’s really important to take care of your mind together with your body as emotional stress can affect both equally.

          Blood Sugar Imbalance

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            Leading on from the type of diet you have, a blood sugar imbalance could be a cause of your lack of energy. Blood sugar levels can become imbalanced over time due to the type of diet you have. If you are eating a lot of processed foods or foods high in sugar then you may experience regular sugar crashes throughout the day. If this is the case then it’s important to decrease the amount of refined sugar in your diet to level out your blood sugar. This may mean eliminating refined sugar altogether – sugar from fruit is a lot healthier so avoiding these isn’t as necessary but if you feel you have a tendency to have a sweet-tooth then consider laying off the sugar for a while to see if it makes a difference.

            Underlying Medical Problems

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              If you think that your diet is healthy, you drink plenty of water, you have no real causes of stress and you exercise regularly but still suffer from tiredness then there could be an underlying medical condition that needs to be addressed.

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              There are many different causes of extreme fatigue such as anaemia where your red blood cells have trouble making hemoglobin which is responsible for carrying oxygen around the body. Other conditions could be chronic fatigue syndrome, sleep apnoea, an underactive thyroid, glandular fever and many more. You mustn’t ever self-diagnose yourself so it’s important to go and see your doctor to discuss any worries that you may have.

              So remember that although you are getting the right amount of sleeping hours, it’s the quality of these hours that are key to eliminating fatigue and exhaustion during the day. Adjusting your lifestyle can benefit you greatly so try making a few changes and see how much of a difference it makes over the next few weeks.

              Featured photo credit: Unsplash via pixabay.com

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              Jenny Marchal

              Freelance Writer

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              Last Updated on February 21, 2019

              Top 9 Foods for Incredible Brian Health And Brain Power

              Top 9 Foods for Incredible Brian Health And Brain Power

              Your brain is the most intricate and powerful organ in your entire body. It’s essentially a super-computer with brain power like a Ferrari.

              If you have a Ferrari, would you put cheap gasoline in it? Of course not. You want to put in high-octane performance fuel to get the most out of your investment.

              When it comes to the brain, many people are looking for the top foods that will supercharge the brainpower to help focus better, think more clearly and have better brain health.

              In this article, we’ll look at the top 9 brain foods that will help create supercharge your brain with energy and health:

              1. Salmon

              Salmon has long been held as a healthy brain food, but what makes this fish so valuable for your brain health?

              It’s important to understand that your brain is primarily made up of fat. Roughly 60% of your brain is fat. One of the most important fats that the brain uses as a building block for healthy brain cells is omega-3’s.

              Omega-3’s are essential for building a healthy brain but one of the most important omega-3’s for your brain is DHA. DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) forms nearly two-thirds of the omega-3’s found in your brain.[1]

              Omega-3’s and DHA in particular help form the protective coating around our neurons. The better quality this coating is, the more efficient and effective our brain cells can work, allowing our brain power to work at full capacity.

              Studies have shown that being deficient in DHA can affect normal brain development in children, which is why so many infant formulas and children’s supplements are beginning to include DHA.

              Being deficient in DHA as an adult can cause focus and attention problems, mood swings, irritability, fatigue and poor sleep.

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              2. Blueberries

              Blueberries top the list as one of the most beneficial fruits to maximize your brain health and performance.

              Blueberries have some of the highest content of antioxidants, particularly anthocyanins, than any other fruit, which helps protect the brain from stress and promote healthy brain aging.

              Blueberries antioxidant content also help reduce inflammation, which allows the brain to maintain healthy energy levels.

              Blueberries have begun to receive attention for their connection to brain performance.[2] Studies have demonstrated that eating blueberries on a regular basis can not only improve brain health but also brain performance as well including working memory.[3]

              Blueberries not only taste great but are low in calories, high in Vitamin C, Vitamin K and Manganese.

              3. Turmeric

              Turmeric is a very impressive spice that has well-researched and proven to have tremendous benefits for your brain. Turmeric’s main compound that benefits the brain is called curcumin, which is responsible for turmerics bright yellow appearance.

              Curcumin has been shown to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-cancer properties.[4]

              Curcumin increases the production and availability of two important neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine, two important neurotransmitters involved with happiness, motivation, pleasure, and reward.

              Curcumin has been well documented to have powerful anti-depressive effects. In one study, it was found to be as effective for depression as popular medications such as SSRI’s like Prozac.[5]

              Curcumin has also been shown to:

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              • Increase blood flow to the brain.[6]
              • Increase BDNF production, a powerful stimulator of neuroplasticity.[7]
              • Increase DHA availability and synthesis in the brain.[8]
              • Increase antioxidant levels in the brain to prevent brain aging and inflammation.[9]

              4. Coffee

              Coffee is the wonderful elixir of energy that many people cherish every single morning. The biggest reason people drink coffee is to get a dose of caffeine.

              Caffeine is a natural neurological stimulant that not only gives you energy but also prevents adenosine, a neurotransmitter involved with feeling tired, from binding in the brain.

              Many people are surprised to find that coffee actually contains a large quantity of antioxidants called polyphenols, which are important for reducing inflammation in the brain and keep your brain energized. The antioxidants in coffee also provide a neuroprotective effect, protecting the brain from stress and damage. [R]

              Coffee can also:

              • Improve alertness and concentration.[10]
              • Help with neurodegenerative disorders like Parkinson’s disease.[11]
              • Reduce your risk of depression.[12]
              • Improve your memory.
              • Provide short-term boost in athletic performance.[13]

              5. Broccoli

              What was your least favorite food as a kid growing up?

              Most likely, broccoli was your answer.

              Broccoli may not have been your top choice, but it might be the top choice for your brain.

              Broccoli contains a compound called sulforaphane. Sulforaphane has been shown to promote the proliferation and survival of brain cells by reducing inflammation and boosting production of BDNF. It has also been shown to boost neurogenesis, the production of new brain cells.[14]

              Broccoli is also loaded with important nutrients Vitamin K and Folate. Vitamin K plays a vital role in protecting brain cells.[15] Folate plays a crucial role in detoxification and reducing inflammation in the brain.

              6. Bone broth

              Bone broth wasn’t just created to combine with soups, you can actually drink bone broth by itself.

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              Drinking bone broth has become one of the biggest trends in the health and wellness industry and for good reason. Bone broth isn’t actually a new thing. Bone broth has been used for centuries as a healing tonic to promote health and longevity.

              Much of the nutritional benefits and value of bone broth comes from its substantial vitamin and mineral content. Primarily calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and potassium.

              Your gut is called your second brain for a reason. Research continually shows that there is a direct and indirect connection between your gut and your brain. Your gut also houses and stores many important brain compounds involved with optimal brain performance. Therefore the health of your gut is vitally important for your brain health and performance.

              Bone broth has become a go-to tool for helping heal the gut and provide the gut with the vital nutrient and resources it needs to heal and perform optimally.

              With the vast amounts of nutrients that bone broth contains, it makes the list as a go-to food for your brain health.

              Look for high quality, organic bone broth for the best results.

              7. Walnuts

              Walnuts are one of the top choices of nuts for brain health. Walnuts also look similar to a brain.

              Amongst the wide variety of nuts available, walnuts contain the highest amounts of the important omega-3 DHA. DHA, as seen above, is a critical building block for a healthy brain.

              Walnuts also contain high amounts of antioxidants, folate, magnesium, potassium, and phosphorus, which help to lower inflammation.

              Melatonin in walnuts is an important nutrient for regulating your sleep. Having low amounts of melatonin can make it challenging to get good quality sleep and getting poor quality sleep can dramatically impair brain health and performance.

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              8. Eggs

              For years, eggs were put on the nutritional naughty list; but now, eggs are finally getting the credit they deserve. Eggs can provide a tremendous boost to your brain health and longevity.

              Eggs, particularly the yolks, contain a compound called choline. Choline is essential for building the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Acetylcholine plays an important role in mood, memory, and intelligence.

              Egg yolks contain some of the highest quantities of choline. This is very important because low levels of choline can lead to low levels of acetylcholine, which in turn can cause increased inflammation, brain fog, difficulty concentrating and fatigue.

              9. Dark chocolate

              You’re about to love chocolate even more because chocolate, particularly dark chocolate, is great for your brain.

              Chocolate boosts levels of endorphins, your brains “feel good” chemicals. This is why you feel so good eating chocolate.[16]

              Chocolate also increases blood flow to the brain which can help improve memory, attention, focus, and reaction time.[17]

              Dark chocolate contains high levels of magnesium, which has been coined “natures valium” for its ability to calm and relax the brain.

              Lastly, dark chocolate has one of the highest antioxidant profiles out of any other food, including popular superfoods like acai berries, blueberries, or pomegranates.[18]

              Conclusion

              Your brain is a high performing organ and it uses quite a lot of energy, roughly 20% of the bodies energy demands.

              In order to maintain a healthy brain, you need the right fuel to ensure that your brain has all the nutrients it needs to perform as well as adapt to the stress of life.

              If you want to keep your brain performing well for a lifetime, then you want to make sure you are including as many of these brain health foods as possible.

              More Resources About Boosting Brain Power

              Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

              Reference

              [1] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: DHA Effects in Brain Development and Function
              [2] Canadian Science Publishing: Enhanced task-related brain activation and resting perfusion in healthy older adults after chronic blueberry supplementation
              [3] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Cognitive effects following acute wild blueberry supplementation in 7- to 10-year-old children.
              [4] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Curcumin: the Indian solid gold.
              [5] Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects. 2nd edition.: Turmeric, the Golden Spice
              [6] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Effect of combined treatment with curcumin and candesartan on ischemic brain damage in mice.
              [7] Science Direct: Curcumin reverses the effects of chronic stress on behavior, the HPA axis, BDNF expression and phosphorylation of CREB
              [8] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Curcumin boosts DHA in the brain: Implications for the prevention of anxiety disorders.
              [9] PLOS: A Chemical Analog of Curcumin as an Improved Inhibitor of Amyloid Abeta Oligomerization
              [10] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Effects of Caffeine on Cognitive Performance, Mood, and Alertness in Sleep-Deprived Humans
              [11] American Academy of Neurology: A Cup of Joe May Help Some Parkinson’s Disease Symptoms
              [12] American Academy of Neurology: AAN 65th Annual Meeting Abstract
              [13] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Effects of caffeine on the metabolic and catecholamine responses to exercise in 5 and 28 degrees C.
              [14] US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: Hyperammonemia induces glial activation, neuroinflammation and alters neurotransmitter receptors in hippocampus, impairing spatial learning: reversal by sulforaphane
              [15] Oxford Academic: Vitamin K and the Nervous System: An Overview of its Actions
              [16] Diana L. Walcutt, Ph.D: Chocolate and Mood Disorders
              [17] Health Magazine: Chocolate can do good things for your heart, skin and brain
              [18] Chemistry Central Journal: Cacao seeds are a “Super Fruit”: A comparative analysis of various fruit powders and products

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