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Extreme Tiredness And Your Health

Tired Man

The feeling of constant tiredness can sneak up on you. In fact, you may be in a state of extreme tiredness before you realize that you have a serious situation. If you do not resolve the problem, it can quickly become a dangerous issue.

You may have always felt that you are a driven person who gets things done. You may have convinced yourself a long time ago that tiredness was a trade off for accomplishments. However, at some point, it will not matter how much you get done because you will be too exhausted to enjoy your accomplishments.

Furthermore, you will no longer have the energy to relax and take pleasure in your recreational time spent with friends and family. This can cause depression and even greater fatigue, making each day seem like more of an uphill battle than the day before.

While tiredness can severely impact your quality of life, it is the causes of extreme tiredness that are most concerning. The most common causes of tiredness are related to sleep. This can include not getting enough sleep, not getting the right kind of sleep, and not getting consistent sleep.

Sleep issues are always the first problem you should suspect if you are tired. However, if you are finding that you are always extremely tired this may also be a sign of a severe medical condition.

Adrenal Burn Out

Adrenaline is your body’s own natural energy boosting chemical. When you feel excited, stressed, in danger, or even joy it triggers your adrenal gland to release adrenaline into your system.

This gives you the surge of energy you will need to function at a higher pace during this time. This surge of energy can take a toll on your body, so your adrenal gland also releases cortisol with the adrenaline.

A molecular model of the hormone Hydrocortisone or Cortisol

A molecular model of the hormone Hydrocortisone or Cortisol

Cortisol helps your body repair and renew by increasing sugar levels, blood pressure, growth hormones. Once the adrenaline is no longer needed and your body has recovered, your adrenal gland releases DHEA. This normalizes your body from the affects of the cortisol, enabling your body to function as usual.

As you can imagine, this is a complicated process that can only work if your adrenal gland is functioning properly. Normally, your body only needs adrenaline every now and then. This gives your adrenal gland plenty of time to repair itself from the strain of releasing adrenaline.

Sometimes, people demand too much of their adrenal gland. Many times, these are the people you consider “driven” or “perfectionists”. However, it can be people who are forced to be in stressful or exciting situations continuously.

In many cases, people have often worked past the point of exhaustion and ignored opportunities for relaxation. No matter the reason, these people’s bodies demand more adrenaline more often. This constant strain can lead to many health problems, including a condition called adrenal burn out.

Adrenal burnout is one of the worst extreme tiredness causes because it leaves your body without the ability to make energy. Not only will you not have adrenaline when you need it, but you will not be able to convert your food to energy in order to perform normal body functions.

In addition to a total lack of energy, adrenal burnout can cause depression, body aches, excessive thirst, and heart problems.

Furthermore, the long term need for adrenalin that led to the adrenal burn out causes large quantities of cortisol to be released into your system without DHEA to counteract it. This can cause weight gain, diabetes, high blood pressure, and other health problems that can lead to further fatigue.

Adrenal burnout is a very critical concern and can be what causes tiredness to be very extreme and possibly dangerous.


Feeling tiredness after eating can be very common when you do not eat the right kind of food. Eating too many carbohydrates, more than 15 total grams, in your meal can make you feel lethargic for several hours.

Not eating enough protein does not give your body the energy boost it needs to feel awake and alert. Sugary foods can spike your energy followed by a quick and severe crash.

Sometimes it may even be your eating habits that make you feel tired after your meal. If you eat very large portions, it can be difficult for your body to digest it all. This naturally slows down the digestive process and you are not able to receive energy from food as quickly as normal.

If you skip meals or eat starved portions, it can cause your body to begin storing energy. In this case, your body will not release the energy you need to feel awake.

People with good diet habits will typically only feel this tiredness on the rare occasion that they eat a low quality meal. People who are very active, overly stressed, or always “on the go” tend to not eat right and have bad eating habits. Furthermore, they are more likely to do this for many months or even years at a time.

Unfortunately, when you consume a poor diet over a long period you starve your body of the nutrients it needs to function and this can cause chronic, extreme tiredness. A poor diet leads to malnutrition which can result in many severe medical conditions that will zap your energy.

A very common malnutrition based condition that causes severe tiredness is anemia. Put simply, anemia is a lack of iron in your blood which causes a reduction in red blood cells.

Red Blood Cells

Red Blood Cells

Red blood cells carry oxygen and the other vital nutrients your body needs to thrive.

When you have a low red blood cell count and not enough oxygen in your blood, your body is not able to distribute energy and nutrients appropriately.

The energy you need to stay alert is simply not available.

Your muscles will become weaker and weaker, increasing the feeling of fatigue.

A major problem with anemia is that your heart compensates for the lack of red blood cells by increasing output. Your heart must work harder and this can lead to heart failure and other organ problems.

Malnutrition leads to other serious problems that are concerning tiredness causes. People with poor diets are more prone to diabetes. When the blood sugar does not remain constant it can dip and give you that “crashed” feeling.

Diabetics often complain of feeling constantly lethargic, especially when they are not eating right. Malnutrition also deprives your body of vital nutrients needed to keep your organs functioning properly.

For example, when you do not get enough vitamins and minerals in your diet it can cause your thyroid function to become sluggish, resulting in a state of hypothyroidism.

Hypothyroidism can cause severe tiredness that is very difficult to overcome without correcting the thyroid function. There are many other medical conditions which cause extreme tiredness and are the result of malnutrition.

The best way to make sure your tiredness is not caused by malnutrition is to begin regularly eating well balanced meals every day.

Next Steps

As stated in the beginning of this article, tiredness can be caused by very simple things like a lack of adequate sleep. It can be caused by your daily lifestyle, such as not relaxing enough or not getting enough time outside.

In these situations, you can typically study your lifestyle and identify the cause of your fatigue. However, if you have addressed these issues and you are still feeling extremely tired then it may be time to examine your health.

End Tiredness ProgramThe e-book End Tiredness Program can help you understand more about the many things that cause severe fatigue and how to overcome them. It will help you identify issues you may have with sleeping and lifestyle that are tiredness causes.

More importantly, the End Tiredness Program will teach you techniques and give you advice on improving your overall health to overcome extreme tiredness. You will learn relaxation, organization, and anti stress techniques to help prevent adrenal burnout. You will also learn eating and nutrition tips to help prevent malnutrition related fatigue.

This kind of severe tiredness can very easily be a symptom of a deeper, more troubling health problem. These health problems can cause greater complications as they progress and can even be fatal.

Your excessive fatigue may be your body’s way of sending you a warning that you are in peril. If you want to start feeling alert and wakeful, it is time to make sure your body is as healthy as possible.

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{ 24 comments… add one }
  • Stokley Riffle December 6, 2010, 2:27 pm

    I am 21 year old from Kentucky. Also I am gentleman and can’t handle tiredness can be problem when I eating cause me sleeping and awake 4 hours later and it limited my sleep time seem not fair and 2 hour later again sleeping and I don’t understand also medications never works. It hurt my eyes forced me going sleep and stressing a lot. I don’t know what to doing next. I still concern about my health issues and I not overweight just normal weight.

  • bill chandler December 19, 2010, 3:23 am

    I feed with a PEG tube taking six bottles of Fortisip multi-fibre per day. Following mouth surgery 4 years ago (cancer) and subsequent radiation my swallow has got worse. I cough up a large amount of phlegm each day.
    I wake three or four times each night but get back to sleep quite quickly after coughing.
    I get very tired during the day and have fallen asleep whilst feeding. Any answers?

  • Jacob January 7, 2011, 8:37 pm

    I am 23 will turn24 on the 8th I am 69 inches and 145lbs . I sleep about 8-9 hours a night but I fill as if I only got an hour of sleep and I all way had very bad back pain where is all my energy going and how do I get it back I also take one a day for men as well.

  • lynn hemmens January 13, 2011, 5:09 pm

    i am in a constant state of tiredness,what can i do?

  • sharon January 22, 2011, 8:26 pm

    hi after sleeping all night i dont feel like i have slept cause i wake up tired and feel that way all day long

  • Thabile February 22, 2011, 8:29 pm

    Im 24yrs and im always tired, when my body is tired i cnt even thnk properly . Please help! It gettng worse everday

  • Livie February 28, 2011, 1:12 am

    Hey, I’m a 16 yr old early college high school student and I barley ever getting a full 8-9 hr night of sleep especially with finals in the next 3 months. I’m lucky if I’m able to go to bed before 10:30 but get up not even 5 hrs after that, which has ultimately caused major sleep deprivation for me. I’m not fully awake at times in school which is hurting me, however if I do go bed early I still feel horrible in the morning. Can anybody help me?

    • Danielle October 5, 2011, 1:19 pm

      Put the book down, Go to sleep! You have 3 months to study..chill

  • Lalonie March 31, 2011, 10:23 pm

    I’m a 64 year old female, and for the past 2 months I’ve been extremely fatigued and very weak. Although my doctor thought I had a viral illness but after 2 months it is still with me. I notice any activity seems to make me really exhausted. What is wrong with me? Could it be an auto immune disease? I’ve always had alot of energy and on the go alot but now I’m not even able to work, as I need to lay down alot and rest my body. And if I overdo, I pay for it the next few days from extreme exhaustion. Can anyone help me?

  • Leah April 10, 2011, 5:59 am

    I have been tired for the last 5 years or so. I can sleep many hours at night, and then nap in the afternoon.
    If I have activities for a day or a couple days in a row I feel wiped out.
    Although if need be, something important comes up, I get up run around do it.. and then go back into my resting state.
    I am 48. From when I was 21 until 42 I was extremely busy with a disabled child plus 2 other children and then foster children. I did not sleep that regularly and I did as much as any one person could do doing my waking hours.
    My children died in a fire in 2001 and I went thru shock and some drug use.
    For 6 years I have not smoked or drank or done any drugs ..
    I am hypo thyroid. but my levels are fine with the thyroid medication.
    My mother is hypo thyroid and has just recently been diagnosed with Lupus.
    I wonder if I have or will have Lupus. Although I have absolutely no joint pain.
    I have never had much pain. What I mean is just a general hardy disposition. Not very sensitive to touch or pains.
    This tired ness has become disabilitating. In that.. I don’t even shower or dress if I don’t have to. and have distanced myself from others so that I don’t have to get up or visit. Even talking on the phone would be a chore.
    I was not like this at all before.
    I do not feel depressed… I feel happy within. I love my home. My family and my life.. except for this fatigue.
    I have spoken to my doctor and.. she ran tests..but nothing
    ? so? I will remain tired I suppose.

  • sus April 13, 2011, 9:19 am

    i feel tired all the time. without energy supplements i can’t get out of bed the next day. i feel depressed and completely burned out and yet can’t find a way out. Plz help

  • bill weber April 13, 2011, 11:27 pm

    i am 89 years old and enjoyed a healthy life. however lately i am
    extremely fatigued. i amchecking to see if anyone else has similar
    condition. i find that being on the computer 34 or 4 hrs a day causes trhe fatigue. could i be correct ?

  • Fran yule May 16, 2011, 12:40 am

    Chronic tiredness can be caused by anything from stress to toxicity of fluoride, chlorine, aspartame, innumerable food and drink additives and preservatives, amalgam teeth fillings, mercury (from too many vaccinations), and aluminium. All present very similar symptoms as do hypothyroidism and iodine deficiency.
    In other words the government sanctioned poisons in our water, food, air and medicines are slowly but surely weakening us and will eventually be the cause of death.

  • Lynda Harding June 9, 2011, 5:23 pm

    I am a 57 year old lady who has a lot of medical problems. Generally i dont sleep very much as i get terrible nightmares since childhood. But recently i have been so tired, I go to bed at 10pm earlier sometimes then i wake at 6am but feel so grogy as if i have not slept at all. then during the day i just want to sleep, i feel so drained. I have great difficulty in breathing as i have COPD, so i cant take my dogs out to far. also i have now got terrible pain down my left arm very painful when i move it and it is also numb.

  • joseph July 11, 2011, 12:25 am

    I am 20 years old, I generally sleep about 6-12 hours a day, I have been depressed, as being bipolar doesn’t exactly help. I will sleep about 6 hours and feel great! the only problem with that is I don’t know when to sleep because I have so much energy, and my body doesn’t naturally know when to sleep because growing up I’ve always taken sleeping pills, and now I don’t, I have been taking iron pills, which seem to help a bit, but I still feel tired, and feel like not doing anything, could my issue be caused by stress, or being I’m bipolar? should I take natural vitamins, and continue my daily iron pills? I also wake up with numb arms, I sometimes have to move them for 2 or so hours, the nerves seem to be completely shot, as I can’t even move my right arm, I know that’s not normal, and I can’t gain weight, although there isn’t much to eat anyway, what are my suggestions?

  • Sophie October 3, 2011, 9:52 am

    I’m 14 on medication that boosts tiredness and i’m sat at school right now about to fall asleep, i don’t know whether to go to the doctors or what…. My stress levels increase with lack of sleep which seems to be constantly. Help?

  • Tyler October 3, 2011, 9:48 pm

    Carpal tunnel disease, I am sure I spelled it wrong, can cause the numbness in the arms and because it is in both it is highly likely. It makes whatever part of the body it is in be asleep for a few hours after awaking and gives a numbness feeling. I highly suggest seeing a nerve doctor and general doctor describing to both of them the situation and do not forget to mention the medication your on.

  • Working guy November 4, 2011, 5:37 pm

    I am a 22 year old. I work 2 jobs and go to school full time. I try and get sleep during the week. I also work 7 days a week and am always tired at 7 in the morning when I get up for work. I get a giant burst of energy after I get outa work which makes it less likely that I will fall asleep by 10. Am I tired because there is something physically wrong? Or is it my life style?

  • Sarah February 11, 2012, 11:25 pm

    Goodness, I am suffering from severve tireness so badly at the moment I havent been able to read all the info on here and can barely focus on what i’m typing!. Benn through an extremely stressfl couple of weeks following death of husbands mother. Since funeral i’ve just wanted to sleep pretty much constantly. Today for instance I have just stayed in but kept dosing off for periods of 20 mins or so.. forced myself to wake only to dose back again.. this cycle has repeatd all day. I sleep as soon as my head hits pillow and reluctantly wake to alarm clock. My eyes are stinging and heavy and keep misting over. I just want to sleep.. what’s going on?

  • SUSAN SHANE February 26, 2012, 1:32 am

    I am 63 years old. I have been unemployed for 4 years. Very difficult securing employment. Now, I have obtained a job and start on Monday. You would think I would be enthusiastic and full of energy. Unfortunately, I am not. Around 2P I get very tired. My energy level is next to zero. I force myself to make the bed and tidy up my house. Everything seems to be an effort for me. I hope I can function working 40 hours a week, at a 9 to 5 job. I need the money. I am in good health. I take 88 mcg of levothryroxine for low thyroid. Normal/low blood pressure. Not overwieight and in realatively good health. Whats up??

    • Aj March 10, 2012, 9:56 pm

      Perhaps subconscious depression, with not working for so long and your way of life being interupted with low funds. Need to reactivate yourself. I’m tired 24/7. I am out of work and can’t get the energy to do anything anymore.

  • Natalia March 12, 2012, 9:26 pm

    Okay so I’m 16
    Yeah young, what my parents say is that I shouldn’t be this tired
    I’m just wondering if its normal
    I’m in high school, sleep isn’t prominent in my life but I think I get enough. I sleep 6 hours on average and then go to school, sometimes sports for a couple of hours, I’d say some changes in life have increased the amount of stress I have lately. But I now get home and the only thing I manage to do is sleep. I’ll eventually wake up after a couple of hours of on and off sleep and do homework. I also don’t eat well, perhaps this is the problem but I don’t know… This has been effecting my grades lately so I’m taking it as a problem, any tips or anything?

  • sheila stern July 19, 2012, 2:56 pm

    I am extremely tired all the time and have a hard time doing anything.

  • Nikki January 1, 2013, 11:10 am

    Sounds like you are experiencing depression which is very normal under the circumstances. Give yourself time to grieve. Everyone handles these things in their own way. If after a couple weeks you aren’t getting better then I suggest you make an appointment with your doctor. Of course it always depends on your relationship with the person who has passed but if you have any doubt that this is what is causing your sleepiness or if you are having any thoughts of harming yourself or anyone else I want you to call your doctor or 911 immediately. Good luck & God bless you & your husband.

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