Constantly tired? Your gut microbiome may be to blame

Constantly tired

You’ve been experiencing low energy for weeks now, you have no motivation, and just cannot concentrate. You think to yourself, what’s wrong with me? Everyone has felt low at some point, but how can you snap out of this state? One possible solution is to improve your gut microbiome.

What is the gut microbiome?

The microbiome refers to all the microorganisms residing on your skin and inside all the parts of your body, and they are involved in the vast majority of processes required to keeping your body functioning normally. Now, the gut microbiome is particularly important, as the bacteria in the gut play an essential role in regulating absorption of nutrients through the intestinal walls, and at the same time preventing harmful substances from being absorbed into the bloodstream.

How does this relate to fatigue and tiredness?

The brain and the gut are directly connected through the gut-brain axis, which is a bidirectional connection involving hormonal and nerve pathways. This means that changes in the gut microbiome can affect your mental health, and vice versa! Therefore, when the gut microbiome is out of balance, this can cause negative consequences for brain function and lead to mental health problems such as burnout and fatigue. 

In fact, a recent research paper found evidence that chronic fatigue syndrome, which is an illness characterised by extreme tiredness, may be linked to an imbalanced microbiome1! The study found that those with chronic fatigue syndrome had a distinct mix of specific gut bacteria which was related to the severity of their symptoms, suggesting that there is a strong link between the gut microbiome and tiredness. Although, chronic fatigue syndrome is not the same as the occasional drop in energy, it does provide important insight into how the gut environment can affect how we feel.

Inflammation, the gut microbiome and fatigue

You might have heard of the word “inflammation,” but what does it actually mean? Basically, inflammation occurs when the body detects foreign microorganisms that may be harmful to the body and sends white blood cells to remove the potential toxins. This causes swelling in the surrounding tissues so that it can protect against the danger. However, chronic inflammation can cause serious damage, and one possible symptom is fatigue. So, if you have been feeling tired all the time, you could be suffering from inflammation! 

So, what does this have to do with the gut microbiome? Well, research has found that inflammation can be caused by imbalances of the gut microbiome, also suggesting that rebalancing your gut microbiome could improve the inflammation2.

So, how does this help me stop feeling constantly tired? 

Now that you know your gut microbiome is tightly linked to feeling constantly tired, you might be thinking, how can I get better? Improving your gut microbiome would be the first step, which involves changing your diet to make sure that your microbiome is balanced. The RYH plan is a fantastic course to improve your gut microbiome, and it provides 4-weeks’ worth of recipes so that you consume the optimal foods to get your gut microbiome in check. If you are suffering from lack of energy, why not sign up for the RYH plan today?

Bibliography

1. Nagy-Szakal D, Williams BL, Mishra N, Che X, Lee B, Bateman L, et al. Fecal metagenomic profiles in subgroups of patients with myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome. Microbiome. 2017;5(1):44. Available from: https://microbiomejournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s40168-017-0261-y

2. Krajmalnik-Brown R, Ilhan ZE, Kang DW, DiBaise JK. Effects of gut microbes on nutrient absorption and energy regulation. Nutr Clin Pract. 2012;27(2):201-14. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3601187/