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Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Dehydration
R. Amir Norris B.Sc.
|When you suffer from dehydration symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome, learning how to cleanse and re-hydrate your body will improve your physical energy as well as reduce brain fog, headaches, skin problems, joint and muscle pain, poor digestion and cravings.
When dehydrated, our internal cleansing system becomes congested and stagnates like dirty dish water. It's amazing how much importance we place on cleaning the outside of our body, and how little importance we place on cleaning the inside!
What are the Symptoms of Dehydration?
Not being well hydrated manifests itself in many ways. Here are some of the more common symptoms reported by those who suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome:
Feeling tired and sluggish
Dehydration can be a cause of fatigue when you have chronic fatigue syndrome. Nearly all body functions are about fluid balance, and even small changes in fluid balance can affect our performance and daily life. If this fluid is not replaced blood volume can drop. As a result, the heart has to work harder in order to supply the skin and muscles with oxygen and nutrients.
As dehydration progresses, the body redirects blood to the working muscles and away from the skin, impairing your body's ability to diffuse heat. The increase in internal heat then results in muscle cramps, light-headedness, and fatigue. If you have chronic fatigue syndrome, you will identify with this symptom.
Many chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers report frequent headaches. Headaches are a consequence of physical and/or mental stress and can result from not being properly hydrated. Headaches caused through poor hydration are a condition shared by many sufferers of chronic fatigue syndrome.
If you have chronic fatigue syndrome, the lack of fluids in your system can be very detrimental to decision making. When the brain suffers from poor hydration, mental fogginess, poor short term memory, dizziness, severe headaches and poor balance results.
Dry Skin, Rashes and Skin Problems
Those with chronic fatigue syndrome often report skin problems. Our body is mostly water, so we need to replenish and maintain an optimum fluid level. Water helps flush out toxins in the body and helps to keep skin supple and healthy.
Water is the skin's own moisturiser and just as the rest of your body requires hydration and nutrients, so does your skin. When our skin suffers the affects of dehydration, skin problems occur. If you have chronic fatigue syndrome and skin problems, you may be suffering from dehydration.
Pain and Joint Swelling
The pain and joint swelling that is so often associated with chronic fatigue syndrome can also be the result of joint dehydration. The cartilage that protects the surface of our bones at the joints is made up of a lot of water. If the joint is well hydrated then the friction between the bones is minimised.
As the immune system attempts to deal with bacteria and viruses, poisons and toxins enter the lymph system to be disposed of from the body. Good circulation assists with this process, but if you have chronic fatigue syndrome, pain often prevents you from exercising. The lymph glands can become blocked and then the toxins remain trapped.
When you drink sufficient water, your body dilutes these toxins and your kidneys more effectively flush out the poisons. You're likely to feel worst before you feel better. But continue to drink lots of water so that your kidneys can flush out all the impurities. You may find Lymphatic Massage helpful.
Dehydration can cause cravings, and this symptom is common amongst chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers. If you crave different foods, alcohol, caffeine, sugars and so on, your body is really disguising its thirst signals.
Water is a natural diuretic and helps prevent you from feeling hungry. If you drink at least four pints of water daily, you will notice that you can more easily distinguish between real hunger and thirst. The net result of this is that you will have fewer cravings and find it is easier to control your weight.
Poor digestion is a common symptom experienced by those with chronic fatigue syndrome. To digest food properly you need to drink plenty of water (but not with a meal, because it dilutes stomach acid).
Drink at least half a pint of water one half hour before you eat. The water passes through the stomach and into the intestine and within half an hour, it is secreted back into the stomach and into the mucous barrier. This barrier retains the sodium bicarbonate that is required to neutralise acid as it attempts to pass through the mucus. Those that are suffering from dehydration have inefficient mucous layers. The acid creeps through and causes pain.
Dehydration can result in the body producing excess histamine which can trigger allergies. This of course, interferes with the body's ability to resist infections, a common pattern with chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers.
So what is Dehydration?
It's common for our bodies to experience dehydration when we have chronic fatigue syndrome. Dehydration can interfere with our natural thirst reflex - many who suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome are dehydrated and don't even know it.
Our bodies are about 70% water. Vital organs like the kidneys, brain, and heart can't operate properly without a certain minimum of water and salt. Dehydration is caused by a loss of water and important blood salts like potassium and sodium.
When your body experiences dehydration, it results in subtle tension in your tissues, muscles and organs. This restricts blood flow. Because your blood flow is restricted, it becomes a dumping ground for toxicity. The result is that you feel as though you are hung over and your muscles ache...common to chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers.
How to get Hydrated
You have probably heard the phrase 'hydration therapy'. There's nothing mysterious about it. It simply means increasing your intake of fresh clean water to avoid dehydration. This is so important for chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers.
When you drink sufficient water, blood flow is not restricted and the toxins can be flushed out of your tissues and into your blood stream. When you are in a state of dehydration, your urine is dark in colour. But when your liver and kidneys are processing the toxic waste and you are well hydrated, your urine is clear.
Experts say that an adult needs a minimum four pints of water for optimum efficiency. Dr. Batmangheldidj, author of Your Body's Many Cries for Water (http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/redirect?link_code=ur2&camp=1634&tag=fatigueanswer-21&creative=6738&path=ASIN/1903571499/ref=ase_fatigueanswer-21) suggests that chronic fatigue syndrome is directly related to constant dehydration.
He states that drinking a minimum of eight large glasses of pure water a day will help to improve the ravages of chronic fatigue syndrome. Only pure water will do. Other beverages like tea, coffee, fruit juices, alcohol and soft drinks are processed in the body as food and in some instances, can actually cause dehydration.
Start slowly with your re-hydration regimen and increase slowly over a few weeks to about 5 or 6 pints per day (providing you don't have kidney/renal problems) of non-carbonated water: bottled or filtered. You'll find yourself visiting the bathroom more frequently, but it does pay off. Your chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms will be less severe.
Water is one of the key ingredients for our bodies to work normally. It's essential to drink enough fresh clean water daily to prevent dehydration - especially when you suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome. So what are you waiting for?
©2005 R.Amir Norris B.Sc.
All material presented herein is provided for information only and may not be construed as medical or psychological advise or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents herein; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals on any matter relating to their health and wellbeing. This information and the opinions provided here are believed to be accurate and sound, based on the best judgement available to the author. Readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.
About the author:
R. Amir Norris B.Sc., Holistic Fatigue Therapist and former CFS/ME sufferer, shares articles and tips to help you overcome your fatigue condition. For more articles, tips and a Free Report on how to tackle ME and CFS visit: http://www.fatigueanswers.com
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