Fighting Ramadhan Fatigue Syndrome Naturally
By Dr. Alicia Wong
April 5, 2021
Ever felt sleepy after breaking fast? Wonder how to stay energized during long working hours? Let’s learn about fighting Ramadhan Fatigue Syndrome naturally.
Ramadhan is one auspicious month in the Islamic calendar. During this holy month, Muslims abstain from food and water or drinks from dawn till sunset. Fasting in Southeast Asia generally lasts for an average of 15 hours. Maintaining high energy during Ramadhan can be difficult and spending most of the fasting hours at work can be extremely tough.
No denial that one might feel more tiring than normal days while working during fasting. However, Ramadhan should not be the excuse behind loss of focus, lower productivity levels or declining work quality. Wanted to know how to cope with fasting and work with focus while maintaining high productivity and quality?
Adaptogens - Ancient herbs to help you become better at adapting to stress and fighting fatigue
Adaptogens aren’t new in terms of discovery for healing and wellness purposes. They are a unique group of herbal ingredients used to support the health of the system that is in charge of managing the body’s hormonal response to stress.
From boosting energy levels to strengthening immunity, different adaptogens can fit for a range of different purposes.
Unlike medicinal herbs, vitamins and minerals, adaptogens help achieve homeostasis in the body whereas many herbs only produce an effect, such as stimulate the immune system, but not normalize an overactive immune system (1).
How do adaptogens work on fighting Ramadhan Fatigue Syndrome naturally?
Adaptogens work just like a thermostat. When the room temperature is too high, thermostat will bring it down, when the temperature is too low, it brings it up.
Adaptogens can calm you down and boost your energy at the same time without over-stimulating it, normalize body imbalances. Besides that, adaptogens also help us to stay in the resistance phase longer, a phase when our heart rate slows and blood pressure to normal, protecting us from crashing during stressful or fatigue moment (1).
Which adaptogens should I use?
Cordyceps has been used for ages to deal with weakness and fatigue by people of high altitude. Many studies have demonstrated the antifatigue effects of Cordyceps sinensis, by inhibiting lactic acid generation and increasing glycogen storage in liver and muscle. Without the accumulation of lactic acid, generation of ATP is sufficient and thus enhance energy metabolism and improve the feeling of fatigue (2).
Panax ginseng has been used traditionally in Asian countries to maintain homeostasis of the body and to enhance vital energy. Difficulty in concentration and memory or altered mood is a major symptom of chronic fatigue-associated disorders. Antifatigue effects of Panax ginseng have been strongly anticipated from clinical experience, by focusing on both aspects of physical and mental symptoms. Panax ginseng has been reported to demonstrate general improvements of fatigue severity along with positive effects on learning, memory or concentration (3).
These plant-based substances are thought to be a no-caffeine ticket to more energy and less fatigue. Rhodiola rosea has been found to improve key stress-related features of prolonged and chronic fatigue, by lowering the levels of stress cortisol and increase production of energy-rich molecules, enhancing anti- fatigue effects. Besides that, Rhodiola rosea also increase hemoglobin capacity to carry oxygen. With the increase of oxygen supply, it will reduce the rate of fatigue (4).
Ramadhan is a time to rejuvenate the body as well as the soul. By providing your body with the right supplements, the challenge to overcome tiredness and lack of energy can be achieved, enjoying fully the spiritual benefits of Ramadan.
- Panossian A, Wikman G. Effects of Adaptogens on the Central Nervous System and the Molecular Mechanisms Associated with Their Stress-Protective Activity. Pharmaceuticals (Basel). 2010 Jan 19;3(1):188-224. doi: 10.3390/ph3010188. PMID: 27713248; PMCID: PMC3991026.
- Geng P, Siu KC, Wang Z, Wu JY. Antifatigue Functions and Mechanisms of Edible and Medicinal Mushrooms. Biomed Res Int. 2017;2017:9648496. doi: 10.1155/2017/9648496. Epub 2017 Aug 14. PMID: 28890898; PMCID: PMC5584359.
- Kim HG, Cho JH, Yoo SR, Lee JS, Han JM, Lee NH, Ahn YC, Son CG. Antifatigue effects of Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer: a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. PLoS One. 2013 Apr 17;8(4):e61271. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0061271. PMID: 23613825; PMCID: PMC3629193.
- Ishaque S, Shamseer L, Bukutu C, Vohra S. Rhodiola rosea for physical and mental fatigue: a systematic review. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2012 May 29;12:70. doi: 10.1186/1472-6882-12-70. PMID: 22643043; PMCID: PMC3541197.