What an integrative medical physician says
It’s normal to be tired after mental or physical exertion, but not being able to meet your usual activity amount—for example, only being able to run two miles at a time when you used to run five miles—is a sign of fatigue. Fatigue means that you can’t reset yourself by taking a break from exertion, such as by getting off the computer and taking a long walk, and that minimal activity leaves you feeling exhausted.
There are two types of fatigue: local and general. Local occurs in certain areas of the body such as the limbs or chest and often results from an individual using a specific body part excessively (for example, hands for a hair stylist). General fatigue is on a larger, constitutional level, from stress, poor sleep, or poor diet.
Work with your health care provider to assess the pattern of fatigue from a variety of perspectives; then build a Multifaceted treatment plan, which may include herbal formulas, lifestyle stress-management tips, and acupuncture. If stress is the cause, prescription drugs, vitamins, or herbs alone will not truly heal your condition. Instead, find a mental therapy that you’re comfortable with, such as qigong, psychiatric therapy, counseling, or meditation. Diet is especially important. To maintain energy levels, eat nutrient-dense foods like berries and foods such as salmon and walnuts that are rich in essential fatty acids.
–Kamau Kokayi, MD, Integrative Medical Physician, Patients Medical, New York