The Root Cause of Fatigue
If you struggle with ongoing fatigue, there’s a good chance an underlying infection, thyroid issue, inflammation, or autoimmune disease is at the root of the problem. Of course, chronic stress and poor food choices can certainly zap our energy as well. And while it is important to identify the root cause of chronic fatigue and address it, medicinal herbs are an excellent choice for supporting you along the journey in regaining your energy and vibrancy.
Anti-Fatigue Herbal Support
A unique mushroom with white “teeth”, lion’s mane increases energy, relieves fatigue, and enhances athletic performance. It is high in antioxidants which help to reduce lactic acid buildup in the blood, increase blood oxygen levels, and lower muscle fatigue. The mushroom also increases muscle glycogen levels, providing a readily available energy source for the body.
Lion’s mane has an impressive array of additional beneficial properties. According to research published in Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, reported “health-promoting properties of the mushroom fruit bodies, mycelia, and bioactive pure compounds include antibiotic, anticarcinogenic, antidiabetic, anti fatigue, antihypertensive, antihyperlipidemic, anti senescence, cardioprotective, hepatoprotective, nephroprotective, and neuroprotective properties and improvement of anxiety, cognitive function, and depression.”
Those who regularly take reishi mushroom report a significant reduction in fatigue, increased mental health, and improved well-being and quality of life. It is also an excellent medicinal herb for adrenal fatigue, a disorder that significantly contributes to low vitality and energy. You can learn more about this energy-sapping condition in my post, The True Cause of “Adrenal Fatigue” — And How to Heal It.
A time-honored herbal remedy in Traditional Chinese Medicine, cordyceps mushroom is said to improve athletic performance and circulation, combat fatigue, and boost energy. It is an outstanding adaptogen that helps to restore health after exhaustion and is well-known in China for enhancing endurance and strength. (6) It is also antioxidant, antimicrobial, antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, and antiprotozoal. Cordyceps is an immune modulator as well and is helpful for those with autoimmune disorders. Many consider it a miracle mushroom.
If you have a high viral load, your energy reserves can be impacted as they are diverted to fighting the infection. Cat’s claw is rich in quinovic acid glycosides that treat herpes, Epstein-Barr, hepatitis B and C, HPV, HIV, dengue fever, and more. It is also anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial. These properties help to prevent infections and helps you to heal. Importantly, cat’s claw is effective for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Do not use if you have an autoimmune disorder as it may cause a flare-up.
Moringa is an exceptionally versatile herb with many beneficial properties. It is rich in antioxidants and active compounds that boost thyroid health, which helps to fight fatigue and encourages high energy levels. Moringa also contains significant levels of tryptophan. This amino acid stabilizes nerve and brain function by increasing the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that calms mood swings, insomnia, and depression. It helps to combat fatigue as well.
Used for centuries, rhodiola rosea helps to improve energy, reduce chronic fatigue, and boost athletic performance. (3,4) It is famous for enhancing physical strength and endurance, and allows athletes to minimize the effects of physical stress. Rhodiola rosea also regulates thyroid hormones so they function normally, which is part of the reason it helps to increase energy. It supports sexual health, libido, and stamina as well. It may also increase fertility. Avoid Rhodiola if you have an autoimmune disorder.
Simply inhaling the scent of peppermint essential oil can give you a mental and physical boost. Research has shown that this particular scent is effective for increasing energy as well as improving memory and alertness. (1,2) And this study demonstrated that ingesting 0.05 ml therapeutic grade peppermint essential oil in water for ten days significantly improved athletic performance and energy.
The Link Between Inflammation, Immune Activation, and Fatigue
Research has established that fatigue is closely linked with inflammation and immune activation by autoimmune disorders such as multiple sclerosis and in response to infections like sepsis. Depression is also an inflammatory condition (5) and often goes hand-in-hand with fatigue. Addressing the underlying autoimmunity, inflammation, or infection is crucial for healing low energy.
Personally I have found great success with healing my severe fatigue by adopting an anti-inflammatory diet, reducing stress and practicing gratitude, and using the products in my Warrior Bundle everyday. The bundle includes reishi, lion’s mane, and turkey tail mushrooms for taming inflammation, improving brain health, and modulating the immune system. It also contains my All-Purpose (First Aid) Salve, Usnea Spray, and Elderberry Tincture for their powerful antibacterial and antiviral properties, which help to prevent and heal sickness. If you are struggling with persistent fatigue, give my Warrior Bundle a try and see for yourself!
Cat’s Claw: Do not take cat’s claw if you are pregnant, nursing, or trying to get pregnant. Do not use if you have an autoimmune disorder as it may cause a flare-up. Consult with your healthcare professional if you are taking blood thinners or any other prescription drugs as it interacts with some of them. Side effects may include nausea, diarrhea, and dizziness.
the morning as it has a stimulating effect and may interfere with sleep.
Cordyceps: Generally considered safe, do not use cordyceps if pregnant or breast-feeding, or have a blood clot disorder. Cordyceps is a vasodilator, avoid using two weeks before a scheduled surgery.
Lion’s mane: Some people are allergic to mushrooms and should thus avoid mushrooms. Symptoms of allergies can include skin rashes and difficulty breathing or even anaphylactic shock. If you have any burning, itching, swollen lips, or breathing difficulties, consult a doctor immediately.
Moringa: Consult with your physician before using if you are on blood pressure medication. Avoid use while pregnant or breastfeeding. Moringa may cause interference with fertility.
Reishi: Reishi mushrooms are safe, however it is possible to ingest too much. Use reishi mushrooms from a reputable source or consult an expert. Think about avoiding reishi mushrooms if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, since safety has not been established. Consult a doctor before using reishi mushrooms if you have a bleeding disorder. Do not use before surgery, as reishi is a vasodilator.
Rhodiola: Avoid use if you have an autoimmune disorder as it may cause a flare up. Do not use if taking SSRIs, if you have bipolar disorder, or are using thyroid medications. Consult with your healthcare provider if you are on anticoagulants or ACE inhibitors. It is best to take rhodiola in