Everyone knows that not getting enough sleep can leave you feeling groggy and listless the next day, but there are also a couple of less obvious causes of constant tiredness to watch out for. Some of these can be avoided while others might require treatment, but the important thing is to be aware of the reasons for your tiredness.
Let's Explore The Most Common Causes of Constant Tiredness
Constant fatigue can put a serious strain on your productivity and quality of life, so there is no reason to put up with it when it can be avoided.
1. Not Enough Exercise
A small number of people can experience insomnia if they exercise too close to bedtime, but studies have shown that late-night exercise doesn’t necessarily disturb sleep quality. However, the prevalence of this belief causes many people to skip exercising, which can actually contribute to them feeling more tired. This is because exercising regularly is good for the body and brain, with even light exercise sessions causing an increase in focus and energy.
2. An Iron Deficiency
One of the most common nutritional deficiencies, especially among women, is iron deficiency. Iron is a vital part of hemoglobin production in the body, and without it, red blood cells can struggle to deliver oxygen throughout the body. In turn, the decreases oxygen reaching your tissues results in a drop in energy. Opt for iron-rich foods, such as tofu, dark green vegetables and beef, to remedy the situation. For better absorption, you can also pair these foods with other foods that are high in Vitamin C.
3. A High Fat Diet
It should be no surprise that eating unhealthy can be one of the causes of constant tiredness. Researchers at the University of Adelaide looked at the dietary habits of more than 1,800 participants, over a 12-month period, and discovered that a high fat diet can be tied to fatigue. The participants with the highest fat intake suffered more from excessive daytime sleepiness but also had poorer sleep quality at night. This can cause a vicious circle because the decreased energy and increased tiredness can cause cravings for more high-fat foods.
4. Irregular bedtimes
Our busy lifestyles can make it tricky to have a regular bedtime routine, which in turn can cause a decrease in energy the following day. Studies have actually found that even with the same amount of sleep during the night, those who stick to specific times for going to bed and waking up feel more alert.
5. Some Types of Vacations
Going on vacation is supposed to provide you with the opportunity to rest and relax, but not all of them have this desired outcome. Studies have actually found that certain types of vacations can leave you even more exhausted when you return home. The vacations to watch out for are the ones that are in colder climates and have greater time-zone differences compared to your home.
6. Your Bedroom Temperature
If you're sweating, your body is working to cool itself down. Since the ideal ambient temperature for a good night’s sleep is actually between 60 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit, it means that a lot of people set their thermostats too high at night. This can result in sleep disruptions throughout the night and a feeling of tiredness throughout the next day. Avoid temperatures below 54 degrees and above 75 degrees Fahrenheit to get the best sleep.
7. Your Workspace
One of the most surprising things that can greatly impact your tiredness is your surroundings, your workspace in particular. When your surroundings are in a state of clutter, it can draw your attention away from where your focus should be, increase your anxiousness and cause an excess of stimuli that your brain has to cope with. Studies have shown that the more objects are in your visual field, the more taxing it is for the brain, tiring it out over time. Keeping your surroundings organized can reduce the strain on your mind and make you feel less tired all the time.
8. Drinking Alcohol Before Bedtime
Alcohol might sound like a good idea to relax and help you fall asleep after a stressful day, but the opposite is actually true. While it is true that alcohol can help you to fall asleep quicker and then sleep deeper for a while, it also reduces REM sleep, which is the restorative phase. The effect is even more pronounced the more you drink, so if you want a restful sleep, it is best to cut back on alcohol before bedtime.
9. Using Light-Emitting Devices Before Bed
We are all used to relaxing and unwinding before bedtime in front of the television or with our smartphones, but unfortunately this can have a detrimental effect on your energy levels. Smartphones in particular can keep you mentally engaged, making it harder to fall asleep afterwards. In addition, the blue light from the screen can also impact melatonin production.
10. Not Enough Of The Right Fluids
Being dehydrated will leave you feeling fatigued, lethargic and unable to concentrate, but your body is already dehydrated by the time that you start feeling thirsty. It is easy to become dehydrated when spending a lot of time outside in the hot sun or simply neglecting to drink water. People also often make the mistake of drinking soda or juice to quench their thirst, which can result in not enough water reaching the cells. Ensure that you remain hydrated at all times to prevent this from happening.
Most people associate depression with a feel of sadness or emptiness, but it can also leave you in a state of constant tiredness. Depression also often interferes with your sleep patterns, which can make the problem worse. Studies have even found that after people have received treatment for depression, the fatigue can continue to linger. By embracing healthier lifestyle choices and speaking to healthcare providers about the problem, it is possible to improve the situation.
12. Sleep Apnea
If you think you are getting enough sleep but still wake up tired, the culprit might be sleep apnea. This sleep-disrupting disorder is responsible for brief interruptions in your breathing while you are asleep, causing you to briefly wake up. If this happens repeatedly throughout the night, it will leave you feeling tired and drained the next day.
13. Not Enough Sunlight
Fear of skin cancer and a dependence on indoor entertainment, such as television or the Internet, has resulted in more people spending their days indoors. Unfortunately, this means less exposure to sunlight, which can result in Vitamin D deficiency. This can impact your melatonin levels and actually cause an increase in fatigue.
14. Too Much Sugar
Consuming foods that are high in sugar can cause an imbalance in your blood sugar levels. This can result in the dreaded "sugar crash" that leaves you feeling tired and listless. In addition to the tiredness, too much sugar can also cause headaches, moodiness and food cravings. Remove sources of refined sugar, such as energy drinks and packaged snacks, from your diet to restore the balance and regain your energy.
15. Sitting Too Much
Sitting down for long periods is very bad for your health, but it is also one of the causes of constant tiredness. In addition to health risks, such as obesity, type 2 diabetes and even certain types of cancer that are linked to sedentary behavior, sitting rather than standing can also sap your energy. According to some studies, it is beneficial to break up prolonged sitting with some light-intensity walking breaks in order to ward off fatigue.