I want to stop feeling so tired and ill all the time
Feeling tired and ill all the time can be a common complaint, so if you feel like this, or it’s someone you know, rest assured that you’re not alone! How often do you walk into work and get asked “How are you?” for you to reply “Tired”. To feel at your best, there are practical […]
Feeling tired and ill all the time can be a common complaint, so if you feel like this, or it’s someone you know, rest assured that you’re not alone!
How often do you walk into work and get asked “How are you?” for you to reply “Tired”.
1. Get into a good, regular sleep pattern
Studies have shown that a lack of sleep can you leave you more susceptible to the Common Cold (1). Not having enough ‘shut eye’ makes you feel pretty rubbish in the morning, but also increase your chances of getting ill.
Ways to sleep better…
- Getting into a regular sleep pattern can help you sleep better as it trains the body to anticipate ‘sleep mode’ at the same time each day. Set a reminder on your phone to go to bed and respect it as THE LAW! Try to get at least 8 hours, although everyone is different, so find out what works for you.
- Avoid looking at your phone or tablet at least an hour before bed, and turn off the TV.
- Turning the lights down, or illuminating your living room with lamps will naturally tell the brain that its time to wind down.
- Try reading a book before it’s time to hit the hay.
- Having a hot bath before bedtime prompts the body’s temperature to fall slightly, helping you fall to sleep! (2)
- Create a dark environment to sleep in by fitting blackout curtains or blinds, or wearing a sleep mask. These measures protect you from being woken by street lights or the sun coming up.
2. Walk often
Regular exercise is an obvious choice if you want to be fitter, but if you are not the exercising type then walking can be the next best thing; especially if it makes you sweat a little. “Exercise leads to an increase in natural killer cells, neutrophils, and monocytes, which ultimately increases immune function,” says Ather Ali, ND, MPH, assistant director of Complementary/Alternative Medicine Research at the Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center.
Long walks in the fresh air can also tire you out and clear the head which can help with sleep, perfect!
3. Interrogate your diet
Maintaining an optimum level of the recommended vitamins and minerals in your diet can be difficult, especially if you have some dislikes and are not fond of fruit or veg. Supplements can be a simple and effective way of getting the vitamins you need.
Here are some vitamins & supplements that help you feel your best, and why:
- Vitamin C: Often associated with oranges, a high does of vitamin C can actually be found in a variety of fruit and veg (some you may not expect!). Kale and Red Bell Peppers have a surprisingly high dose of vitamin C, but a little known fact is that much of it is actually destroyed before it reaches the blood stream. Vitamin C has been scientifically shown to boost the immune system, it has also been shown to aid the production of collagen, so not only can you be healthier, you can have better skin to boot!
- Vitamin D: Harnessed from the sun and certain foods (Dairy and fish). Studies have shown that Vitamin D can help reduce the prevalence of upper respiratory tract infections, especially during cold and winter months. (3)
- Echinacea: Widely used to fight the symptoms of the common cold, the flu, and other upper respiratory infections. Originally used by the Native American Indians as a herbal remedy, Echinacea could be that little bit of something extra that helps you feel better.
4. Don’t skip meals
A busy lifestyle and an empty stomach can increase your chances of getting ill, it sounds obvious but food gives you energy and nutrients! So, skipping meals when you’re already feeling low is highly likely to make you feel worse. Look after yourself and make sure you are well fuelled. Consider fresh fruit and veg and more complex carbohydrates instead of a quick snack or shop bought sandwich. Keeping hydrated is also critical to brain function and general well-being, so consider having a fruit juice or glass of water first thing, and top up during the day.
Relaxing and trying to de-stress your life can have a positive impact on your health. A study by Kiecolt-Glaser and friends (1984) found evidence of immunosuppression (suppression of immune response) when stress increased in a young and otherwise healthy population.
This basically means that when you are stressed your body is less able to fight illness.
There are plenty of things you could take up to de-stress such as Yoga, exercise, reading or even revisiting an old hobby. It doesn’t have to be any effort. For some, it could be as simple as taking some time out to watch a film.