Fatigue: From Fatigued to Fabulous, with Chinese Medicine by Christina Tolstrup

  • Home >>
  • Sleep >>

Are you tired of feeling tired? Tired of not having enough energy to do all the things you have to do and more importantly want to do?

The good news is we never tire of helping you feel better, and Chinese Medicine (CM) is fundamentally all about generating, promoting, moving and regulating energy (also referred to as Qi)!

Acupuncturists: We’re Energy Electricians for Your Body

Acupuncturists are a bit like electricians…we check your internal energy circuits to determine what’s causing energy shortages, and to detect any faulty connections in your system (preferably before your power cuts out!). According to this analogy the acupuncture points on your body then resemble an electrical switchboard where switches can be turned on and off as required for balance and optimal energy production, circulation and distribution.

Why Are You SO Tired?

A lack of energy can be felt as temporary tiredness or being worn-out after a particularly busy period or average sleeping. It can range from regular afternoon slumps to ongoing sluggishness and lack of motivation to more chronic exhaustion, listlessness, lethargy and severe debilitating fatigue. Tiredness can be felt in just parts of the body, such as the eyes or the head, or it can be felt like a sluggishness, heaviness or weakness in the whole body.

Whether mild, severe, acute or chronic, there are generally five main reasons why you might be excessively tired:

  • Your body is not getting enough or the right ‘fuel’ (nutrition, vitamins, minerals and hydration)
  • You don’t get enough rest
  • You do too much physically and/or mentally (i.e. there’s an imbalance between the energy you spend and the energy you generate)
  • You’re suffering or recovering from infection, illness or an underlying health condition
  • Certain medications

Seasons and weather can also impact your energy levels. It is natural to have less energy and require more sleep during the winter months.

In Chinese Medicine we consider all the possible reasons mentioned above, not just within our CM framework but also in conjunction with conventional medicine. We’ll often recommend you have investigative tests or scans to reveal any causes or contributors to your tiredness. This could be vitamin or mineral deficiencies, hormonal imbalances, thyroid dysfunction, infections or other indicators of a more serious illness.

Eat, Sleep, Breathe, and Move to get back in the Groove

So, getting your diet, sleep, activity levels and work life balance right is vital if you want more energy. Easier said than done, right? So where do you start?

Typically, a CM practitioner begins by addressing the following aspects of your health and routines:

  • Sleep / Rest
  • Diet & Digestion
  • Exercise
  • Lung Function

Let’s consider why these aspects are so important…

Sleep / Rest:

You rejuvenate and generate energy when you sleep. If you’re suffering from insomnia, night sweats, a racing mind, a cough, backache or anything else that is disturbing the length and quality of your sleep, it’s a given you’ll be tired. We can provide treatments to improve your sleep.

Not all tiredness is improved by rest, sleep and a reduction in activity. This type of tiredness is usually due to an obstruction of energy, commonly caused by:

  • Stress and worry
  • Trauma (physical or psychological e.g. grief)
  • Injury
  • A sedentary lifestyle
  • Diet

Diet & Digestion & Breathing:

You get energy from food, water and air. However, if your body doesn’t transform, digest and transport the food, water and air properly, perhaps due to weaknesses or obstructions in your lungs or digestive system, this naturally affects how much nutritional value and oxygenation you obtain, and the amount of energy you can then generate. We can help strengthen your digestive and lung functions with the CM treatments we offer.


For your bodily systems to function optimally a certain amount of movement is required. Your lymph system for instance, which is an important system for your immunity and for getting rid of waste, doesn’t have a pump and needs you to move in order for lymph to circulate and do its job. Your blood and oxygen need to flow and circulate to provide nutrients and energy to all your cells in your body. Movement and exercise promote this flow and circulation, as well as it improves circulation of feel good hormones, and has a multitude of other physical, mental and cognitive health.

How to get your ‘spark’ back with Chinese Medicine treatments

Through a detailed CM diagnosis we work out if the problem is in fact due to an insufficiency or a blockage of energy (or a bit of both!)

Get Your Energy ‘Firing’ with Tonics and ‘Rewiring’

Acupuncture, massage, cupping, and moxa can help ‘rewire’ i.e. remove any blockages and smooth the flow of fluids and energy in your body. This improves and strengthens your organs and bodily functions so they work better at generating energy, and using energy more efficiently.

Energy tonics made from Chinese herbs do the same but can in addition also be helpful in supplementing, balancing, nourishing and strengthening your organs, blood, energy and bodily functions.

By finding out the root cause of your energy problem, removing any obstructions, strengthening any areas of weakness and tailoring treatments to your individual needs, energy levels can improve, both now and long term. This is how treatments with Chinese Medicine can help you fight fatigue so you can be an efficient ‘power plant’, produce enough energy, feel fabulous and enjoy your life!


By Dr Christina Tolstrup


Christina is available at Mornington Chinese Medicine Tuesday’s 9am-2pm.

138 Tanti Avenue, Mornington, VIC

03 5973 6886