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Q:

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I was wondering if anyone could help me out. I yawn and feel tired during the day. Especially around 8pm, before I should be going to bed. But, I know it's not because I need more sleep. I get at least 8 hours a day, if not more.

I am wondering if I am not getting something in my diet that I should be. Is there a deficiency I could have that may make me more tired than I should be? I feel like I eat enough in each food group though.

One thing I do not do is exercise. I walk around during that day to go different places...but that's the extent of my exercise! Maybe it has something to do with that?

What are your thoughts?

Bri Luginbill asked this
November 22, 2011 at 3:55 PM

A:

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Hi Bri,

There is a strong correlation between exercise and energy. The more you move, the more energized you will feel! I would certainly recommend moving more - especially this time of the year. With our days becoming shorter and shorter, it is easy for our bodies to lose our natural circadian rythym and become tired earlier (especially as 8pm looks more like 11pm!).

Water is also a big factor. Are you drinking enough water? Dehydration can easily result in symptoms of fatigue.

When it comes to diet, aim for a balanced mixture of healthy foods using MyPlate.gov as a guide. If your diet is low in iron, the resulting anemia may certainly cause tiredness. To boost your iron intake reach for more spinach, broccoli, and lean red meat (spinach goes great in a simple salad or a hearty soup, broccoli is delicious roasted!). Anemia may also result from low vitamin B12 or folate - both of which will also be found in lean meats (B12) and leafy greens (folate). By aiming for a diet rich in a variety of whole grains, lean proteins, and a rainbow of produce, you may soon find your energy levels have returned! A standard multivitamin supplement may also help.

Less common causes may stem from a food intolerance or an underactive thyroid...

I certainly hope this advice helps, Bri. Let us know how what works for you :)

In good health,

Jessica

Jessica Corwin MPH RDN Health Coach answered
November 22, 2011 at 6:57 PM

If I run in the morning before work and eat breakfast I seem to have a more energy filled day!

Dayton from SLN answered
November 29, 2011 at 4:29 PM

I definitely agree with you, Dayton!

Jessica Corwin MPH RDN Health Coach answered
November 30, 2011 at 7:26 AM

I have a similar problem, but mine stems from sleep apnea. I find that no matter how much sleep I get, if my breathing is not clear, I will be tired the entire next day. Now, I know that my sleep apnea comes from my being overweight, which I know that you have no problem with Bri, but I know that apnea can come from other sources, being that is it just obstructed breathing while sleeping. Might be something to think about!

Rex answered
May 25, 2012 at 2:08 PM

That is a great point, Rex. Sleep apnea is a serious health problem that may be affecting up to 18 million Americans. In fact, a good friend of mine needs to sleep while connected to a breathing machine called CPAP to ensure that he does not stop breathing for too long. This only goes to show how serious sleep apnea can be - particularly as it may increase your risk for high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, obesity, diabetes, and even heart failure.

Jessica Corwin MPH RDN Health Coach answered
July 3, 2012 at 6:11 PM
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