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Post Viral Fatigue: A Naturopath's Perspective

Updated: Sep 17, 2023

Post-viral syndrome, also known as post-viral fatigue, is a condition characterized by a prolonged period of fatigue and other symptoms following a viral infection. This can include illnesses like influenza (the flu), Epstein-Barr virus (which causes mononucleosis), and more recently, SARS-CoV-2 (which causes COVID-19).

The exact cause of post-viral syndrome is not fully understood medically, but it's thought to involve a complex interplay of immune, metabolic, and neurological factors. After the acute phase of the viral infection has resolved, some people continue to experience symptoms such as:

  • Persistent fatigue, exhaustion

  • Muscle and joint pain

  • Headaches, tight band around the head

  • Sore aching eyes

  • Difficulty concentrating or "brain fog", forgetfulness, difficulty focusing

  • Sleep disturbances, restlessness, night sweats

  • Mood changes, such as depression or anxiety

  • Enlarged lymph nodes

  • Sore throat, swollen glands

  • Reduced stamina

  • Muscle aches, pains, weakness

  • Tendon inflammation

  • Sweating

  • Dizziness

  • Sore or tender feet

These symptoms can significantly affect a person's quality of life and ability to perform daily activities. It's important to note that post-viral syndrome is a diagnosis of exclusion, which means it's typically diagnosed only after other possible causes for these symptoms have been ruled out. Treatment for post-viral syndrome medically primarily focuses on symptom management with paracetamol, rest, and psychological support. Naturopathically we can do so much more.

Taking a Holistic Approach Naturopathy takes a comprehensive holistic approach post-viral syndrome, taking into account the whole individual rather than just addressing specific symptoms. The main goal is to support the body's self-healing process and restore balance.

Some of the strategies that might be resourced may include :

  • Diet and Nutrition: This is a fundamental part of naturopathic treatment. The practitioner might recommend a balanced, nutrient-dense diet to support immune function and energy production. Specific foods, vitamins, minerals, or other supplements might be recommended based on the individual's needs, as well as identifying and removing foods that put a strain on the system.

  • Herbal Medicine: Various herbs have immune-supporting, anti-inflammatory, and adaptogenic (helping the body adapt to stress) properties that might be beneficial. The choice of herbs depends on the individual's symptoms and overall health needs.

  • Lifestyle Counselling: This could involve advice on sleep hygiene, stress management techniques, gentle exercise, and tweaks to the influences of a person's habits and environment.

  • Homeopathy: Some naturopaths use homeopathic remedies in their treatment plans. These remedies are made from natural substances and are used in a way that aligns with the principle of "like cures like.

  • Physical Therapies: This could include microcurrent, bioresoannce therapy (Bicom) therapy to help manage symptoms like pain and fatigue, while addressing some of the deeper causative layers trapped in the body and nervous system (eg: stealth pathogens, cytokine triggers, allergies, sensitivities, low energy).

The focus is on improving and strengthening the body's resources for self-healing, as all healing is self-healing. Removing the obstacles to this process, while supporting what is lacking, can make all the difference to a process of recovery.

Andrew's Story

Andrew came for his first session when he was 28. Like most people he had a history of infections and vaccines - having his tonsils removed as a child, and his appendix as a teenager. He was sick a lot in school, and when Covid came along he got a very serious bout of it. His vaccination hit him hard, and he went on to have another three infections after that, it didn't protect him as he expected. He was so debilitated that he was struggling to get to work and had a great many sick days. He would collapse on a Friday and sleep all weekend, only to get up exhausted on Monday morning to do it all again.

We started with a full review of his medical tests and scan reports, and added some functional pahtolgy testing to get a clear staring point.

Andrews energy system was so low. We started him on weekly Bioresonance treatments for 8 weeks, changed his diet, put him on herbs and nutritional supplements and set him up with lifetstyle routine that would nurture his recovery and not prevent it.

By the end of four weeks he could feel the difference, and didn't want to stop anything as he was feeling hopeful for the fist time in years. At the end of eight weeks we added in some functional testing to check on his thyroid, Epsteine Bar Serology, Antibodies, and microbiome mapping. We still had work to do. He was harbouring high titres of two protzoal parasites (dientamobea and blastocystus), an elevated level of strep and pneumococcus in his gut, deficiency dysbiosis, and a confirmed history of infections. We started his gut repair program and supplemented this with fortnightly sessions on the Bicom, which he looked forward to.

Across his is six month program Andrew remained committed. On the rare occasion that he lapsed from his diet, he got a motivation boost to get back on the wagon as it made him feel terrible. He experienced two viral infections over this time, but he was able to recover faster from them and, knew what to do at the first sign of any infection starting. This gave him an enormous sense of confidence and he no longer felt at the mercy of every bug and lurgie floating on the air.

The most noticeable shift was in his body pain, stamina, and mood. He was able to start exercising again and wasn't hobbling around in pain anymore. His family and work colleagues were commenting on the change in him and he really enjoyed the feedback.

Working this way on your health is not cheap or easy, but it is worth it. Whatever therapies you have tried or may be using, holistic Naturopathic approaches can complement your recovery, and support your journey back to healthier, lasting recovery.


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