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Why are we so tired all the time?

Posted at 8:17 AM, Aug 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-30 09:17:25-04

Tiffany Hollinger is always on the go.

"I wear a lot of hats, and so my day is very full."

She's a realtor, runs her own general contracting business, and is devoted to her family.

"I don't have any children, but I am the auntie of the most. So I'm there for my nephew's baseball games, my niece you know doing aerobics or what have you," Hollinger says.

But everyday like clockwork, "At 2:45 p.m. on the dot, it's like a massive like, someone just hit me with a brick," Hollinger says.

Hollinger, like many adults, suffers from fatigue.

According to Consumer Reports, it was once solely attributed to aging but doctors are rethinking that, measuring how tired people are in relation to the activities they do.

It's called fatigability.

nancy foldvary, sleep clinic director

Dr. Nancy Foldvary, Director of the Cleveland Clinic Sleep Disorders Center, says, "There are many causes of fatigue and it really requires a comprehensive evaluation, thinking a lot about sleep patterns, and sleep disorders."

Dr. Foldvary says about forty percent of American adults simply don't get enough sleep, which can lead to fatigue.

Other people feel tired because of some common sleep disorders, like sleep apnea or insomnia, and some less common conditions.

"We'll see people come to the sleep center, who have other disorders, like restless leg syndrome where their legs are needing to move at night, and it takes them a long time to wind down," says Dr. Foldvary.

People with heart failure, Parkinson's disease, Epilepsy, often suffer from fatigue.

Hollinger says some of her struggles can be blamed from medical conditions as well.

"So I'm vitamin d deficient. I'm anemic. So I have low iron," Hollinger says.

But that doesn't mean you have to sit there and take the tiredness.

Hollinger is working with a fitness expert and nutritionist to help her tackle her fatigue.

Plus she takes power naps and eats smaller meals more throughout the day to give her body more fuel to work with.

Dr. Foldvary says, "Sometimes, you know, we're going long stretches without eating or eating foods that can induce more sleepiness or fatigue, like high carb diets."

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