It’s not uncommon to hear people complain about feeling cold and tired. It is important to listen to your body and try to identify if there are certain times of the day you feel tired, or if it’s constant regardless of time of year or schedule.
When we feel sluggish and chilled, this is often a sign of either a cold coming on, or simply lack of sleep and good food. It could also be an indication that we just need to take time off and check in with our stress levels.
Feeling cold in the extremities (hands and feet) is usually a sign of poor circulation. This happens from not moving enough, or it can be a result of tight muscles. If the muscles in your legs cramp up, you might experience tingling and cold feet. Going for a massage, using a foam roller, or simply moving more would help considerably. Often, when we don’t get enough sleep, we feel cold everywhere. This is simply your body reacting to deprived rest. Taking a nap and catching up on sleep is a sure fix.
If however, you are someone that feels cold and tired all the time, this should not be ignored. As a naturopath, I do see many clients with these symptoms that are constant and are usually a result of weak thyroid and adrenal glands. Let me explain in more detail.
Hypothyroidism (Underactive Thyroid)
The symptoms of hypothyroidism (low thyroid function) include cold hands and feet, fatigue and a host of other problems including bone and hair loss, brittle nails, and poor metabolism. Since many people choose to consume “cooked” dairy products and refined sugars (can cause increased mucus production), they develop congestion throughout the sinus cavities, head area, throat, bronchi and lungs. The thyroid/parathyroid, located in the throat area also becomes hyperactive (overactive) or in most cases hypoactive (underactive). The job of the thyroid/parathyroid glands includes increasing and/or decreasing the following: metabolism, the ability of the cells to absorb and use glucose, the use of fats, rate and strength of heart rate, rate of calcium absorption from the blood, intestines, bones and kidneys. Therefore, we can see how important it is to nourish the thyroid gland.
Adrenal Gland Issues
The adrenal glands are possibly the most important glands in the body. The reason for this is that they produce neurotransmitters, which are essential for brain and nerve function. These neurotransmitters turn nerve responses on and off which affect all tissues in the body including the heart, vascular system, intestines, skin and kidneys. Low blood pressure, for example, is always an indicator of adrenal weakness. People with low blood pressure typically always feel cold. The other important function of the adrenal glands is that the cortex (outer portion of the gland) produces cortisol and corticosteroids, which act as anti-inflammatory compounds which are vital to combating inflammatory responses in the body. Also, excess production of this steroid can affect aging as your muscle tissue and skin can be severely affected. Too much stress in your life can hit the adrenals hard. This is why taking time for yourself, practicing breathing and meditation can help strengthen your adrenals significantly. Never ignore time for YOU.
Make a Wellness Visit
The best way to regenerate the cells of your thyroid and adrenals is to see a qualified health practitioner to improve your diet so that you can nourish these glands with the nutrients they need. A change in diet to more alkaline-forming foods can play a huge role in turning symptoms around. All the vitamins and minerals required to feed the cells of the thyroid and adrenals are available in their raw state.
Remember, the energy and vitality in your food will translate to how you feel every day!
By Frances Michaelson
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