In August 2023 members of a research team mentored by the National Institutes of Health completed a study on WASF3, a protein believed to play an important function in the movement and oxygenation of cells. The study, which was published by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal, high levels of the WASF3 protein are detected in many patients who live with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). The findings of this study are hopeful for people who deal with CFS because they address the constant exhaustion many of them deal with.
Many of the causes and biological processes of CFS are not fully understood, but one leading theory in this regard suggests that the mitochondrial protein chains that distribute oxygen and energy at the cellular level are unevenly formed in CFS patients. It appears that too much WASF3 interference in mitochondrial processes could answer some of the many questions that surround CFS, which for the time being continues to be a condition without a cure, which means that it must be treated symptomatically. With this in mind, here are four CFS symptoms that can be alleviated to improve quality of life.
1- Mysterious Fatigue
A profound tiredness that is not relieved by resting is the hallmark symptom of CFS. Some patients do not feel this fatigue until after they engage in physical activity; this is known as post-exertional malaise, a condition that can last from a few hours to a couple of days. Research studies suggest that CFS involves a depletion of carnitine, a biological compound that is part of energy production, and high doses of vitamin C can help replenish carnitine.
2- Muscle and Joint Pain
This is a common symptom that can range from mild to severe among fibromyalgia patients, particularly those who also suffer from arthritis. The root causes are not fully understood; they may be related to muscle dysfunction, inflammation, or a combination of the two. Over-the-counter analgesics such as aspirin or acetaminophen may help relieve mild to moderate pain, and the same can be said about CBD supplements.
3- Difficulty Sleeping
People who live with CFS often deal with insomnia. They may have trouble sleeping, either falling asleep, staying asleep, or getting enough sleep. It is not uncommon for many CFS patients to wake up feeling unrefreshed several days in a row, and this only exacerbates other symptoms. When CFS affects the pineal gland, inadequate production of the melatonin sleep hormone ends up disrupting the sleep cycle. The recommended treatment should focus on stimulating melatonin production.
4- Cognitive Difficulties
CFS patients may have difficulty concentrating, thinking clearly, or remembering things; this may be related to an imbalance of neurotransmitters and neuroreceptors. Thankfully, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can go a long way in terms of making patients aware of their condition and how they can develop habits and mental routines to offset neurological issues.
Until medical researchers can get to the bottom of CFS, patients who live with this condition will need to continue seeking relief for their symptoms. Keep in mind that CFS appears to be systemic, so holistic and integrative approaches to treatment are always preferred.