AN AYURVEDIC PERSPECTIVE ON FATIGUE AND TEN TIPS TO REDUCE IT
AN AYURVEDA PERSPECTIVE ON FATIGUE AND 10 SIMPLE STEPS TO REDUCE IT!
I wanted to write a little on fatigue today. It’s a subject close to my heart as I lived with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome for many years as some of you know. And also I’ve noticed that I often feel fatigued this side of Christmas. It’s reminded me of the important indicators that fatigue has in Ayurveda. It is not to be ignored.
How about you? Have you also been feeling fatigued lately? How steady and stable are your energy levels? And what do you do when you are feeling fatigued? Do you reach for a pick me up? A coffee or a chocolate bar? Many of us do, right? And whilst these might give us a momentary and convenient boost, especially when we are on the go, most of us know that after this quick energy surge comes a crash and more fatigue, which will cause us to reach for more of the same. And so we get locked in a vicious cycle peaks and dips in our energy. This kind of solution to our fatigue will have detrimental effects on our health in the long term
What Ayurveda invites us to do is to take a good look at the signals our body is giving us and consider how our diet, lifestyle, work patterns, sleep, and recent events might be conspiring to make a “fatigue cocktail”!
Sometimes fatigue can be purely physical after exerting the body with physical work or exercise, can’t it? Other times it is more mental after a lot of hard mental work, right? And then also there’s the emotionally-drained kind of fatigue, and this might hit us especially hard after an especially difficult time. Grief will do it. And other major life events such as divorce or relationship break-up, moving home, caring for sick or elderly relatives.
Ayurveda understands that whatever the source of our fatigue, we will have to go back to basic building blocks of lifestyle and diet to really remedy the situation.
ln Ayurveda, fatigue tells us something about our Prana (our vital force) and can represent a breakdown in the body-mind-consciousness connection. It is to do with our Prana not being able to flow properly, being blocked and/or depleted. Perhaps, less obviously, fatigue also tells us something about the state of our “agni” or metabolism. And as each Ayurveda type has it’s own metabolic tendencies, it is important to understand your Ayurveda make up when starting to address your fatigue so that you can better understand what might have gone awry due to imbalanced living or periods of unavoidable and debilitating stress and distress.
For example, a Kapha type might need to move the body more in cardiovascular exercise, to clear fatigue-inducing stagnation and congestion leading to toxicity in the body. However, the Vata type which already has a tendency towards restlessness, worry and anxiety and therefore overstimulation of the nervous system and the mind, might need guidance to allow the system to quieten and support to become more still. And a Pitta type who has a tendency towards driving too hard which can lead to burn-out type of fatigue, might need support to create more ease and contentment, and to cool the body and mind.
As each Ayurveda type has its own type of Agni (metabolism), balancing individual metabolic function is key is going to be a key ingredient in reducing fatigue and boosting energy levels. When Agni is not functioning optimally, there is likely to be an accumulation of toxicity in any of the three Ayurveda types. Inadequately metabolised foods and other substances the body encounters, create “ama” or toxicity in the system and this can be a major drain on the energy reserves as Prana/energy is used by the body to protect itself from and process the accumulated toxins.
An Ayurveda practitioner will help you to reduce toxicity, strengthen your Agni and therefore boost your energy and reduce fatigue through lifestyle and dietary prescriptions according to your Ayurveda type and state of health. And he/she may recommend an Ayurveda Cleanse programme. Regular Ayurveda Seasonal Ayurveda cleansing is a fantastic way to boost and sustain energy levels as it optimises Agni function and reduces ama/toxicity thereby relieving fatigue. In severe fatigue cases, such as M.E and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome an Ayurveda cleanse may be too harsh and the practitioner will work more gently over a longer period of time to gently remove toxicity and balance the agni).
There are steps you can take however to reduce your fatigue levels and develop good, steady levels of energy. Why not try to implement these ten simple tips to your daily routine and watch your fatigue decrease and your vitality increase,
- Try to go to bed no later than 10.15pm. The old adage that an hour before midnight is worth two afterwards is a wise saying as this is the time when the body is replenished.
- Aim for 7 – 9 hours of sleep per night.
- Support a good night’s sleep by resting in the evening before bed and avoiding work on the screen, too much social media scrolling, stressful TV viewing, stressful conversations and/or reading. Massage warm sesame oil onto the feet just before going to sleep if you tend towards insomnia.
- Eat at regular times throughout the day, and make lunch your main meal. Eat more lightly and close to 4 hours before sleep in the evening.
- Eat foods that are in season and that suit your body type. Avoid over-eating and eating on the go. Avoid or reduce stimulants such as caffeine, sugar and alcohol. Sit down quietly to eat and try not to do anything else whilst eating.
- Keep to regular daily routines also in terms of waking, working, exercise, sleeping as well as eating.
- Exercise daily according to your Ayurveda type: a practitioner can guide you on this. Try to walk in nature daily.
- Practice Yoga asana daily, and balancing pranayama practices such as alternate nostril breathing in the morning and evening to help balance the nervous system and calm the mind.
- Take time each day to pause, to enjoy yourself and definitely schedule work breaks during which your phone and other devices are put aside.
- Schedule time for replenishment. A weekly Ayurveda body treatment, or a regular Restorative Yoga class can work wonders, giving you permission to take a good pause and restore body, mind and heart.
Please do see what happens to your energy levels, your sleep and all round sense of well-being as you gradually implement these simple changes.
TO FIND OUT REDUCING YOUR FATIGUE AND BOOSTING YOUR ENERGY LEVELS THROUGH AYURVEDA 1-1 COACHING , PLEASE CLICK HERE
FOR DEATILS ON THE AYURVEDA SEASONAL CLEANSE PROGRAMME PLEASE CLICK HERE
ALTERNATIVELY CONTACT ME FOR A 15 MINUTE CHAT ABOUT YOUR FATIGUE OR ANY OTHER CHRONIC AILMENT
Love and best wishes
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