These are my Top Ten tools for my ongoing recovery from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
Get more rest than you think you need, it will allow your body to regenerate like nothing else. Sleep as much as you can, and spend time lying down with eyes closed in a quiet place.
Expend less energy than you have available, so the extra energy can be used for regeneration. Break up your day into smaller segments. Then rest for 10 minutes, 20 minutes, maybe have a nap. Take these breaks often. Journaling can help track how it's working for you. A pattern may emerge which can guide you to better health.
Personally, I do best with high protein and fats, and vegetables. Most other carbohydrates make me ill. I avoid most fruit because of the high glycemic content.You may have a completely different set of needs. You can see a specialist, or if that's not possible, try your own elimination diet. Grains, dairy, corn, and eggs commonly cause allergy or sensitivity.
Common deficiencies for people with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome are Vitamin B12, B6 and folic acid, all the B vitamins tend to be low for us. Other supplements that have helped me are omega 3 oil and Vitamin D3.
5) Gentle detoxification
The liver may become overwhelmed by toxins. Various foods aid the liver, e.g., beets. Tonics can help, e.g., milk thistle. We may have viruses and bacteria that our immune systems haven't been able to eliminate.
Antibiotics are useful, but preferably in short-term situations, because they can wound our immune systems badly. Other options are oil of oregano and olive leaf extract. Liquid chlorophyll cleanses the blood of toxins.
6) Healing the digestive system
We may have overgrowths of unhealthy bacteria or yeast, and insufficient enzymes for proper digestion. We may have Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or Leaky Gut Syndrome and be unable to absorb nutrients. A low carbohydrate diet may help with the yeast and the hypoglycemia which is common among us. Probiotics can help correct the imbalance.
7) Restoring the adrenals
We may experience adrenal insufficiency. I've used adaptogens and have seen increased energy and better endurance from this. Ginseng, licorice, rhodiola rosea, ashwaghanda, reishi, shitake and maitake mushrooms, and cordyceps are a few adaptogens.
8) Alternative therapies
Many of us don't handle drugs well. Alternative therapies like acupuncture, Reiki, naturopathy, and homeopathy can aid in recovery for people with CFS.
9) Mind/Body techniques
Quieting the sympathetic nervous system and stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system helps the healing process. The sympathetic nervous system (Fight or Flight) is great in a crisis, but when activated for too long, it has a breaking down effect on the body.
The parasympathetic nervous system brings rest and regeneration, allowing the damaged systems to heal. Yoga, tai chi and meditation will activate the parasympathetic system. However I caution those who cannot exercise without setback to avoid these. Breathing techniques and visualization techniques can be helpful.
10) Cultivating hope
Having hope of recovery has been essential for me. I began to picture what recovery could be like. I began to picture the smaller things I'd like to do, like buying my own groceries, or even just going for a walk. Later I began to picture where I'd like my life to lead. What did I want for my life?
This last was difficult at first. It had been so long since my thoughts had turned toward living in health. I couldn't see past my invalid state. But hope releases healing chemicals in the body, quite different from those generated by despair.
For that reason alone, I began to exercise hope for the first time in years. And ... hope feels better than despair. It's worth the effort if you can do it.
I spent 15 years losing the battle against CFS. Two years ago, I found treatment that worked for me, and now I am making a comeback.