Why am I so tired all of the time!?!
Feeling exhausted throughout the day? Hitting a wall in the afternoon, after your coffee wears off? Feeling as though you just want to lay down and sleep anywhere, any time?
If you have been feeling this way, you want some answers. You have probably been to your doctor and have been told that your thyroid, iron, B12 and other blood test results are normal. However, you are still doubtful because you know your body and you know that there is something that is just not quite right.
This is the story that we hear time and time again and there is an answer. You are not meant to feel fatigued all day long, feel like you are dragging through the day or that your body or muscles will not cooperate.
Let’s talk about blood work and lab values. The laboratories set “normal ranges” which are basically the averages across a large population. By doing this, they do not however, take into consideration ‘outliers’ or those people who simply feel better having slightly higher or lower values because that is just what their own body requires.
Interpretation of blood tests can vary between doctors and unless a value is flagged by the lab as being abnormal (outside of the range), your doctor often does not notify you.
For example, the “normal” range for ferritin (your body’s iron storage) is 22 to 275 ug/L for males and 5 to 272 ug/L for females. That’s a HUGE range! Many times, a patient will have a ferritin level at the very bottom of the normal range, but are still being told that their results are “normal”. As Naturopathic Doctors, we like to see ferritin over 50 ug/L.
Here are some other examples of commonly run labs, their normal ranges and preferred/optimal levels.
|Iron||11-34 umol/L||> 16 umol/L|
22-275 ug/L for males
5 - 272 ug/L for females
|> 50 ug/L|
|TSH||0.32 - 4.00 mIU/L||< 2 mIU/L|
|Free T3||3.1 - 6.2 pmol/L||> 4 pmol/L|
|Free T4||9 - 19 pmol/L||> 12 pmol/L|
|Vitamin B12||138 - 652 pmol/L||> 400 pmol/L|
Let’s talk about what a Naturopathic Doctor can do to address your chronic fatigue.
A Naturopathic Doctor will carefully look over your blood test results and properly diagnose your deficiencies or excesses. If you do not have some of the necessary blood tests, your Naturopathic Doctor will be able to requisition the appropriate labs so that they can better diagnose and treat the cause of your fatigue.
After reviewing your labs, your Naturopathic Doctor will be able to suggest a treatment that is best suited for YOU. For example, if it turns out that your vitamin B12 level is low, your Naturopathic Doctor will suggest either dietary sources of B12 or supplementation of B12. Naturopathic care is a collaborative effort between doctor and patient so if it is easier for you to take a B12 pill or injection, your Naturopathic Doctor will take this into consideration and prescribe the best route of supplementation for you personally.
Okay, this all sounds great, where do I start?
You can start by arranging an initial consultation with one of our Naturopathic Doctors. CLICK HERE to book online.
If you have blood test reports from your doctor, you may bring them with you to your appointment and your Naturopathic Doctor will review them carefully with you.
Now is the time to start feeling alive! We are looking forward to meeting you and helping you to truly thrive!
Author: Dr. Harmonie Eleveld, ND