Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

February 1, 2017

The following are summarized symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome:

  • Muscular pain, Joint pain, and severe headaches
  • Poor short term memory
  • Painful lymph nodes
  • Stomach pain and other problems like constipation, diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome
  • Insomnia
  • Sensitivity or intolerance to light, loud noise, alcohol, and certain foods
  • Psychological difficulties such as depression, irritability and panic attacks
  • Less common symptoms like dizziness, excess sweating, balance problems and difficulty controlling body temperature

Causes of CFS

Theories abound about the causes of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. No primary cause has been found that explains all cases of CFS.

Many people say it started with flu-like illness or other infection like cold or stomach bug. It also follows infection such as Epstein-Barr virus (the virus that causes mononucleosis or ‘mono’)

Effects of CFS

Infections: The most notorious pattern seen in CFS is when a person suddenly comes down with a flu like illness that does not seem to go away. These viral or bacterial infections can suppress the body’s master gland, the hypothalamus.

Disturbed sleep: The suppression of the hypothalamus gland can lead to poor sleep because the body confuses its day/night cycles. Because of this people with CFS have trouble staying in the deep restorative stages of sleep that recharge their batteries.

Treatments:

Medical treatments:

Medications that provide symptom relief are frequently the first line of treatment chosen by healthcare practitioners for a person with CFS. These include medication for pain, sleep disturbance, digestive problems such as nausea, depression, anxiety, and flu-like symptoms.

However, medications have not been universally successful because they tend to put a bandage on symptoms instead of killing the root problem.

Alternative Treatment:

  • Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NADH): NADH is a naturally occurring molecule formed from Vitamin B3 (niacin) that plays an important role. Although very promising, larger studies are needed to prove the effectiveness to this supplement.
  • L-Carnitine: Carnitine, found in nearly all body cells, is responsible for transporting long-chain fatty acids into the mitochondria, the energy-producing centers of cells. It allows these fatty acids to be converted to energy.
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