Energy Dysregulation Symptoms
Tiredness, fatigue, lethargy
Top 5 Energy-Related Symptoms
Top 5 Energy Disrupters
These can range from the more obvious lack of energy, tiredness and fatigue to the more complex, such as obesity and the metabolic syndrome (abdominal obesity; elevated blood pressure, sugar and fats; and an increased risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease). At the heart of all of these conditions lies a disturbance in the energy regulation mechanism of the body.
1 Tiredness, fatigue, lethargy
Tiredness is the first sign that your body is struggling to produce the energy it needs to perform all of its functions or respond to stress. You will generally feel the need to eat more or drink caffeine to raise your energy levels. When your blood sugar falls you will feel sleepy.
2 Anxiety, irritability, mood swings
Stress is a natural physiological resonse designed to re-distribute stored energy quickly at times of increased energy demand. It is necessary for our survival. The response is the same whether the threat is real or perceived. Unlike our caveman ancestors, we are no longer fighting tigers but, stress, in all its myriad forms, is now so pervasive in today's society that it can often lie at the heart of energy-related conditions.
Glucose is the main fuel of your body. It is carried to your cells via the blood circulation system. Hence, one of the roles of the circulation is to act as the fuel delivery system of the body. The amount of glucose in your blood is highly regulated - too little will interrupt the fuel supply to your cells, too much is damaging to your blood vessels. This makes blood glucose regulation central to energy balance. However, this balance can be disturbed in many ways including through poor diet and chronic stress.
2 Blood sugar disturbances
Increased demand for energy can lead to blood sugar highs and lows as the body tries to keep the energy levels constant. Reduced energy to the brain during blood sugar lows can cause poor concentration, irritability and mood swings.
3 Weight gain, central fat deposition
Continued increased energy demand initiates the desire to eat and invokes the adrenal stress hormones (adrenaline and cortisol) to re-direct energy from storage into the bloodstream for use. This extra energy will be stored as fat around the middle if not used.
4 Disturbed sleep, insomnia
Your body is very active whilst you sleep, carrying out vital functions such as repair, growth and detoxification. All of these require energy. If your energy levels fall too low for these functions, the stress hormones will kick in to re-direct energy stores and will wake you up.
5 Poor concentration, impaired judgement
When the demand for energy continues over a prolonged period, blood sugar levels become unstable. Regular blood sugar lows result in the energy supply to the brain becoming irregular. This disturbs brain function making concentration and thinking more difficult.
3 Gut dysbiosis
Your gut is your body's interface with contents from the external environment. As such, it harbours a nervous system feedback mechanism to your brain that allows it to feedback messages in relation to appetite control. The gut microbiota play a pivotal role in this feedback mechanism but if the balance between the 'good and the bad' bacteria is lost (termed dysbiosis), then this feedback mechanism becomes impaired. The connection between gut flora, energy production and metabolic-related disorders is now clearly recognised.
4 Hormonal imbalance
Hormones are chemical messengers that are released into and transported in the blood to target organs to regulate physiology and behaviour. The key hormonal regulators of energy balance are insulin and glucagon, which direct fuel to the cells for energy production or storage; cortisol, which increases fuel supply from stored energy; and thyroxine, which increases the rate at which fuel is burned. These hormones respond to changes in your internal and external environments and can become imbalanced for a variety of reasons.
5 Environmental toxic exposure
This is an often over-looked area but is becoming increasingly important as the number of toxins that you are exposed to on a daily basis increases. You will be taking in environmental toxins from the food that you eat, the water that you drink and the air that you breathe. They are impossible to avoid. Some of the common toxins include PCBs (polychlorinated diphenyls), pesticides, mould and fungi, phthalates, VOCs (volatile organic compounds), dioxins, heavy metals, chlorine and xenoestrogens. These toxins are harmful to your body. It is known that they can disrupt hormone function, impair mitochondrial function (your cellular energy batteries) and are now being linked to the metabolic syndrome.