To Your Health
October, 2010 (Vol. 04, Issue 10)
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Schedule Maintenance

Fatigue schedule maintenance - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark Simply put, don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today, whether it's changing your car's oil, going to the grocery store or doing any of the daily tasks that get put off again and again. Get organized and make a plan of action to complete tasks.

Procrastination leads to mental stress and anxiety. It's the dread of anticipation that will take it out of you every time. To minimize the risk of perpetual procrastination, make a list of the "Top 5 Things to Do Before Noon" each day. Whatever task you want to do the least should be at the top of this list. Get these tasks over and done with before midday, and you won't spend the day worrying and stressing about getting them done. Then start on your To Do List for the remainder of the day.

You can prepare these lists ahead of time and organize your week in advance. After all, it's easier to avoid stress when you can plan your week of activities. Each night when you are getting ready for bed, create and read over your list for the following day. Buy a pocket organizer or use your smartphone task/calendar settings to store your schedule. Have a list of contacts and resources that are easily accessible. Check off your list after each task is completed; this will give you a sense of accomplishment.

Fuel Up

Fatigue fuel up - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark Eating frequently helps to maintain normal blood sugar levels, preventing energy crashes during the day. If you wait too long between feedings, your insulin levels spike, causing your body to go on a hormonal roller-coaster ride. You will feel surges of energy followed by sudden crashes with tiredness, fatigue and lethargy. It is very difficult for your body to maintain a normal state of energy with big swings in metabolic hormones.

Try consuming three regular meals and two snacks per day, waiting no longer than three hours between meals. Never skip breakfast. Breakfast sets the tone for the day in terms of your metabolism. Combine macronutrients (protein, carbohydrates and fats) each time you eat. Limit simple carbohydrates such as juice drinks, bread, pasta, crackers, or processed foods, since these are known to cause mood swings from blood sugar changes. Combining macronutrients normalizes the glycemic index effects of foods on your blood sugar levels. This index traces how much blood sugar spikes in relationship to the food you eat. The lower the glycemic index number, the better for your body. Finally, eat more protein and fibrous carbohydrates to reduce digestive fatigue on the body.

Top Off Fluids

Fatigue top off fluids - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark First and foremost, dehydration leads to thirst. This has negative effects on body chemistry, and it takes your system about 24 hours to recover. This additional stress on your body can fatigue your adrenal glands (which control cortisol and adrenaline hormones) and neuromuscular system. There is also a decrease in the absorption of nutrients from food via the lining of your small intestines, since you body is more acidic with dehydration.

Your brain is 83 percent water. Dehydration can cause depression, dementia, anxiety, confusion, delirium and aggravation. Physical problems include fatigue, constipation and headaches. You might also become more susceptible to colds, allergies, and joint pain, since your immune system will weaken. All that can have a profound effect on your energy levels.

So, when it comes to water, how much is the right amount? Multiply your weight in pounds by 0.5 and 0.7. The numbers generated are the range, in ounces, of water you should drink each day. If you're not close to that range, don't worry; gradually increase your water intake over the next month or so. And as I've said before, keep in mind that caffeine is a natural dehydrator. That means you should drink 2 cups of water for every cup of caffeinated beverage you consume.