What is fatigue?
Fatigue is classified as continual weakness, low energy levels, tiredness and general fatigue, rather than sleepiness and drowsiness.
Fatigue is one of the most common tell-tale signs of hormonal imbalance in women, which is especially prevalent during perimenopause and menopause. In fact, when we asked our readers to rate their health concerns, 87% of 800 respondents rated ‘fatigue’ as important or very important. Within the 40 to 50 age group, ‘fatigue’ was second only to ‘weight gain’ in the list of health concerns rated as ‘very important’.
Can menopause cause fatigue?
Perimenopause is when we see a fluctuation in hormone levels. Hormones are responsible for controlling energy at the cellular level, so when there is an imbalance in, and between, the female hormones progesterone and oestrogens, we get fatigue, decreased sexual interest, and in many cases depression. There are other hormones involved in the cause of fatigue, such as the thyroid hormones, and the stress hormone, cortisol, and its ratio to DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone).
Of course, women experiencing other symptoms such as insomnia and night sweats will find these contribute to fatigue during the day. Insomnia has a knock on effect and many women find fatigue exacerbates other symptoms including but not limited to; brain fog, poor memory, difficulties concentrating, mood swings and anxiety.