Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

What is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?

Chronic fatigue syndrome is a serious long-term illness characterized by profound fatigue, sleep abnormalities, and pain that is made worse by physical exertion.

Chronic fatigue syndrome occurs more commonly in women and is thought to be caused by environmental or genetic factors such as:

  • Infections (bacterial, fungal, viral)
  • Postpartum
  • Emotional and physical stress
  • Autoimmune illnesses (lupus, MS, and rheumatoid arthritis)
  • Hormonal imbalance (thyroid, adrenal, reproductive)
  • Toxins (lead, pesticides)
  • Lack of sun exposure
  • Heart disease
  • Infectious diseases (TB, Chlamydia, etc)
  • Cancer, neurological disorders, obesity

The main symptom is fatigue for over six months, which worsens with activity, and does not improve with rest.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

What Causes Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Generally?

Triggers for chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) includes the following:

Sudden Onset:

  • Postinfectious (e.g. viral, antibiotic sensitive infections, and parasites)
  • Postpartum

Gradual Onset:

  • Prolonged or frequent emotional and physical stress
  • Secondary to autoimmune illnesses (e.g. lupus, MS, and rheumatoid arthritis)
  • Fungal infections/Candida
  • Hormonal deficiencies or excess.
  • Imbalanced thyroid levels
  • Adrenal fatigue
  • Toxin exposures (e.g lead and pesticides)
  • A prolonged absence of sun exposure,  (e.g. during the winter, leading to a shortage of “happiness hormone”, serotonin.)
  • Diseases of the cardiovascular system (atherosclerosis, hypertension, hypotension, and anemia)
  • Infectious diseases (tuberculosis, chlamydia, chronic viral infections etc)
  • Cancer
  • Diseases of the nervous system
  • Obesity

What are the Symptoms?

The most common symptoms of CFS are fatigue coupled with severe insomnia or non-restorative sleep, post-exertional weakness, and cognitive dysfunction, often called “brain fog.” Orthostatic intolerance—defined as the worsening of symptoms when standing—is also common.

Other symptoms include the following:

  • Sinus problems
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Weight gain
  • Irritability when hungry
  • Unexplained muscle pain
  • Joint pain without redness or swelling
  • Unrefreshing sleep
  • Significant impairment of short-term memory or concentration
  • Headaches of a new type, pattern, or severity
  • Tender cervical or axillary lymph nodes
  • Sore throat that is frequent or recurring

How is it diagnosed?

Sometimes CFS is difficult to diagnose because its symptoms are similar to those of many other diseases.

Some of the diseases which resemble symptoms of CFS include:

  • Lyme disease
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Lupus (SLE)
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Mononucleosis
  • Depressive disorders
  • Sleep disorders

Before settling on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome as a diagnosis, our practice focuses on performing a variety of diagnostic tests to rule out other medical conditions associated with fatigue. We are proud to offer an individualized approach to treating this Syndrome.


The good news is that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is not a deadly disease. Most people recover from it with proper Chronic Fatigue Syndrome treatment, while others improve tremendously by learning to nurture their bodies from the inside out.

Many underlying issues need to be addressed – from lack of sleep and poor dietary choices to covert infection by viruses or bacteria, and hormonal imbalances. In our practice, we perform a detailed analysis of your symptoms and perform a different diagnostic test to find a culprit for your condition.

We specialize in providing an individualized Chronic Fatigue Syndrome treatment plan to help alleviate your suffering and improve your overall health.  Our treatment of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome focuses on several aspects of a person’s health:

  • Hormonal Imbalances
  • Sleep
  • Infections
  • Healthy nutrition
  • Personal exercise coaching for an active lifestyle
  • Mental health


Hormonal Balance

Hormonal imbalances may be a direct cause of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), so balancing your adrenal, thyroid, and reproductive glands hormones can make a huge difference in treating your Chronic Fatigue symptoms.


Most people with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome complain of non-refreshing sleep as a prime concern. If you are one of these people, in order to give your muscles and nervous system a chance to heal, we will need to investigate the reasons for your sleep problems. We will discuss your sleep hygiene, causes of insomnia, dos and don’ts of a proper sleep routine, as well as natural methods to help you sleep better. If we suspect deeper sleep problems such as apnea, we might advise you to consider a visit to a sleep specialist.


The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and Lyme disease are two of the most common illnesses seen in association with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). Infection with yeast, parasites, enteroviruses, and other bacteria may also cause CFS. As part of our diagnosis, we will test for these infections so that you can be properly diagnosed.


Proper nutrition is an important aspect of any chronic fatigue treatment protocol. In order to heal, your body needs to be provided with whole, fresh foods, such as fruits, vegetables, high-quality fats, and protein (in their natural form – free of preservatives and pesticides, and ideally organically grown). High-quality vitamin and mineral supplements along with mercury-free fish oil and probiotics help speed the recovery process. It is also important to be aware of any food sensitivities or intolerances you may have since these might be a direct cause of or could exacerbate Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Substances such as gluten, dairy, sugar, artificial sweeteners, and preservatives are common sources of food allergies.


Exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. Unfortunately, due to body pain and fatigue, people with this syndrome often adopt a sedentary lifestyle. Incorporating an appropriate exercise regimen should be done gradually, especially for people with CFS. We could help you to begin and improve your physical activity and refer you to professional personal trainers or exercise specialists.

Mind and Emotional health

Other factors to consider as we treat Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is your mental health.  In treating Chronic Fatigue, it is important to address the mind-body connection. Constant emotional stress drains adrenal reserves and puts stress on hormonal regulation.

Hormonal imbalances in turn have a strong impact on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. People with this Syndrome often benefit from psychological counseling, emotional support, and guidance. Breathing exercises, Tai Chi, Qi Gong, and mindfulness meditation are also excellent options to decrease anxiety and help deal with the stress associated with symptoms.

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23672 Birtcher Dr, Unit A Lake Forest CA 92630
665 Camino De Los Mares, Ste 203A, San Clemente, CA 92673

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