Red Light Therapy for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: Reducing Fatigue and Improving Energy Levels
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Red Light Therapy for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: Reducing Fatigue and Improving Energy Levels
Create on 2023-12-12
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Imagine feeling constantly exhausted, despite minimal physical or mental exertion. This persistent fatigue doesn't seem to lessen, regardless of how much sleep you get. This condition sounds like Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) or Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME). It is a debilitating illness characterized by extreme fatigue, cognitive issues, and sleep disturbances for at least six months. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), there is no cure or approved medical treatment for CFS. However, management techniques like red light therapy relieve symptoms and improve quality of life.

Chronic Fatigue

How Does Red Light Therapy Improve Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?

    1. It Increases Energy Level. The hallmark symptom of CFS is persistent fatigue with or without sleep. And though this condition may feel like an uphill battle, all hope is not yet lost. Red light therapy works if you bet on it. This is how: There is a strong correlation between chronic fatigue syndrome and low ATP (cellular energy) production. Mitochondria, the powerhouse of your body cells, produces sufficient energy for cells to function well. However, in CFS patients, the mitochondria do not release enough ATP, causing persistent physical, emotional, and mental fatigue. Low-intensity wavelength or near-infrared light emitted from a red light device stimulates mitochondria to produce more ATP, which is needed to increase energy levels in CFS victims.
    1. It Reduces Stress Perception. Another symptom of chronic fatigue syndrome is long-term stress, which contributes to depleting energy levels. Red light therapy is known to combat stress in CFS patients by maintaining a healthy balance in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. The HPA axis is a complex neuroendocrine system that plays a vital role in your response to stress. Whenever you encounter a stressor, whether it's physical, emotional, or psychological, the HPA axis helps the body tackle the stressor. Red light therapy ensures that the HPA axis releases cortisol, the stress hormone. This hormone helps mobilize energy reserves by increasing blood sugar levels to provide your body with a quick energy source.

What Are The Other Benefits Of Red Light Therapy For CFS Patients?

  1. It improves sleep.
  2. Red light therapy reduces muscle and joint pain.
  3. This treatment relieves depression and boosts mood.
  4. This study found that red light therapy at 630 nm improves cognitive functions such as memory retention and concentration.

How Effective Is Red Light Therapy In Reducing Fatigue And Improving Energy Levels In CFS?

Most studies published so far to prove the efficiency of red light therapy in increasing energy levels address different conditions and not CFS. Still, red light therapy is an emerging therapeutic procedure that has gained popularity in managing fatigue associated with CFS. But currently, there are not enough studies to support it.

However, this recent study to determine the efficiency of virtual light therapy for fatigue revealed that bright light therapy and dim light therapy/red light therapy are effective techniques for managing fatigue and increasing energy levels by stimulating the mitochondria.

Another study to assess the short and long-term effects of light therapy on Cancer-related fatigue confirmed that all participants experienced a significant reduction in fatigue symptoms after consistent exposure to bright white light and dim red light.

Find The Right Red Light Device For CFS

If you have CFS and are interested in red light therapy, opt for the best devices on the market. There are three main types of red light units: a red light, a near-infrared light, and those with both. All of these have proven effective for managing fatigue associated with chronic fatigue syndrome.

When you are choosing your red light devices, Bestqool should be your number one choice. Our Pro300 devices emit the recommended intensity of 630 nm, 660nm, 850nm, or 940nm necessary to achieve the expected result of improving energy levels without any risks or side effects. With Bestqool, you do not need to worry about safety because our products have been vetted and cleared by the FDA, CE, FCC, and ETL.

red light therapy for CFS

Living With CFS: Alternative Ways To Improve Symptoms

Although red light therapy is a terrific way of combating CFS, it is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Here are other ways you can improve your condition aside from red light therapy:

    1. Nutrition: Eating healthier foods like organic produce makes a significant difference. As much as possible, eliminate junk or preserved foods from your diet. Doing this will reduce inflammation, which worsens CFS symptoms.
    1. Exercise: Regular low-impact exercise like walking and lightweight training helps to improve functional strength. Just make sure you do not overwork yourself.
    1. Pacing activity: This self-management skill helps preserve your energy levels. You can use an activity diary to track your performance level. The principle is to know your limits and thus preserve as much energy or strength as possible.
    1. Deep breathing and Mindfulness: This can help relieve anxiety and depression associated with the illness. Many CFS victims attest that short, shallow breaths and mindfulness practices like yoga help the mind and body to relax.

REFERENCES

Butler M, D'Angelo S, Lewis C, et al. Series of virtual light therapy interventions for fatigue: a feasibility pilot study protocol for a series of personalized (N-of-1) trials. BMJ Open 2022;12:e055518.

Mateen, Farrah J. MD, PhDa,b,*; Manalo, Natalie C. MDa,b; Grundy, Sara J. BAa; Houghton, Melissa A.a; Hotan, Gladia C. BSc; Erickson, Hans BAa; Videnovic, Aleksandar MD, MSca,b. Light therapy for multiple sclerosis-associated fatigue: Study protocol for a randomized controlled trial. Medicine 96(36):p e8037, September 2017.

Myhill, S., Booth, N. E., & McLaren-Howard, J. (2009). Chronic fatigue syndrome and mitochondrial dysfunction. International journal of clinical and experimental medicine, 2(1), 1–16.

Starreveld, D. E. J., Daniels, L. A., Kieffer, J. M., Valdimarsdottir, H. B., de Geus, J., Lanfermeijer, M., van Someren, E. J. W., Habers, G. E. A., Bosch, J. A., Janus, C. P. M., van Spronsen, D. J., de Weijer, R. J., Marijt, E. W. A., de Jongh, E., Zijlstra, J. M., Böhmer, L. H., Houmes, M., Kersten, M. J., Korse, C. M., van Rossum, H. H., … Bleiker, E. M. A. (2021). Light Therapy for Cancer-Related Fatigue in (Non-)Hodgkin Lymphoma Survivors: Results of a Randomized Controlled Trial. Cancers, 13(19), 4948. https://doi.org/10.3390/cancers13194948

Zhang, J., Yue, X., Luo, H., Jiang, W., Mei, Y., Ai, L., ... & Tong, Z. (2019). Illumination with 630 nm red light reduces oxidative stress and restores memory by photo-activating catalase and formaldehyde dehydrogenase in SAMP8 mice. Antioxidants & Redox Signaling, 30(11), 1432-1449.

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