Cracking the Code: Exploring the Link Between Fatigue and Endocrinology

Do you feel fatigued despite having a healthy lifestyle? Then, it may be happening due to hormonal imbalances and hormonal disorders. Hormones are the chemical messengers in the body that help in many functions. They’re also linked with tiredness and energy levels. Learn about the link between fatigue and endocrinology and what you should do about it in this article.

Common hormones and disorders

Hormones are the chemical messengers that are essential for growth, development, reproduction, and several other functions in the body. Each hormone has a different function and effect on the body and some of them can even make you tired.

  1. Serotonin and melatonin:

Melatonin and serotonin are two neurotransmitters that work together to play an essential role in the sleep cycle. Serotonin is a natural hormone that is produced by the central nervous system to regulate the sleep and wake cycle and keep us happy and energized. It also turns into melatonin at night. Whereas melatonin is produced by the pineal gland which helps you to sleep at night and works as a natural body clock.

At night, darkness increases melatonin production which helps you fall asleep, whereas during light it decreases melatonin production which helps your body get up or stay awake.

That’s why you may feel more tired in the winter since daylight is limited. Spending time in the dark can increase melatonin which makes you feel sleepy even during the day. To prevent this, make sure your work and home environments are filled with light as much as possible, and try to get out to get natural daylight during your lunch break or when you get the time.

Similarly, when you watch a phone, computer, and television at night their blue screen decreases your melatonin levels which makes it hard for you to fall asleep. That’s why you should avoid blue screen devices before going to bed and make sure you turn off all lights to produce enough melatonin to help you fall asleep.

To produce melatonin, serotonin is needed, and if its levels are not maintained with the right amount of foods that contain tryptophan, then you will experience sleeping problems.

  • Estrogen:

Estrogen is the main sex hormone in women which also plays an essential role in the growth and maintenance of the female reproductive organs. Additionally, it also allows the body to effectively use serotonin.

As serotonin is essential for sleep, not being able to use it can lead to poor quality of sleep. So, if you have low levels of estrogen, it may lead to poor or disrupted sleep, which makes you feel tired the next day.

Low levels of estrogen occur when women hit menopause. As a result, they suffer from low energy. Menopausal women should consider using menopause support to balance their hormones (it also contains magnesium which helps to fight tiredness).

  • Progesterone:

Progesterone is also a sex hormone that plays a crucial role in pregnancy as it prepares the body for labor. Additionally, progesterone is also a muscle relaxant and helps in the production of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) which promotes sleep.

At the end of the menstrual cycle, progesterone levels tend to be highest which can increase GABA production. As a result, you get better sleep which can increase your energy levels.

However, at the beginning of the menstrual cycle, progesterone levels tend to decrease which automatically lowers the production of GABA, making you feel more tired and less energetic. Similarly, progesterone levels also decrease during menopause which may cause tiredness and lack of energy at this stage of the lifecycle.

  • Testosterone:

Testosterone is a sex hormone found in both males and females (at different levels). Men produce more testosterone than women. It plays an essential role in the reproduction system for both sexes and also helps in growth, muscle development, and improved bone mass in males. However, after 30, testosterone levels start decreasing gradually in males as a result of aging.

Your testosterone levels also change while you’re sleeping. They tend to increase during sleep, especially, in rapid eye movement sleep (REM), and decrease during waking hours. So, if you have a poor sleep pattern that lowers the amount of REM sleep that you get, ultimately lowers your testosterone levels.

Low testosterone levels may cause fatigue and low energy. Research even found that low levels of testosterone are linked to tiredness and sleep disturbance. So, if you’re suffering from low testosterone levels, then visit your doctor to find the cause and treat it.

  • Aldosterone:

Aldosterone is a salt-managing hormone that is produced by the adrenal glands. If you have low aldosterone you may have low blood pressure, and like salty food. This may lower the blood supply to the brain which causes fatigue. That’s why if you recently experienced sudden salt food cravings, then you should visit your doctor to check your hormonal levels.

Besides these main hormonal imbalances causing fatigue, certain hormonal or gland disorders can cause fatigue as well, including:

  • Thyroid disorders:

The thyroid gland produces two different hormones (T3 and T4) to regulate many essential functions in the body. When your thyroid gland is not able to produce enough T4 hormone in the body, cells start working slowly which causes symptoms like tiredness, muscle aches, and sensitivity to colds. This condition is known as hypothyroidism.

Hypothyroidism is mostly caused by Hashimoto’s thyroiditis where antibodies attack the thyroid gland by mistakenly considering it as a threat.

  • Adrenal Gland issues:

The adrenal gland produces a stress-regulating hormone called cortisol in response to fight-or-flight situations and regulates energy levels. However, if you develop adrenal fatigue or adrenal insufficiency, then it may cause fatigue.

  • Insulin resistance:

Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas that controls blood sugar levels in the body. However, when you develop insulin resistance, your cells stop responding to insulin and the pancreas is forced to produce more insulin to manage blood sugar levels, which leads to chronic fatigue.

  • Growth hormone deficiencies:

Growth hormones play an essential role in overall growth, repair, and vitality. It is produced by the pituitary gland. Its deficiencies can lead to muscle loss, fat gain, especially around the abdomen, psychological changes, joint pain, poor sleep, fatigue, and weakness.

Keep in mind that fatigue is a sign caused by various other factors as well, including poor sleep, stress, nutritional deficiencies, and certain medical conditions unrelated to hormones. So, to find the exact cause of chronic fatigue, you should consult with a healthcare professional for proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment for an underlying cause.

What to do?

If you’re experiencing persistent and unexplained fatigue despite having a good lifestyle or due to lifecycle stages where hormonal imbalances are normal. Then, you should visit your doctor for a proper diagnosis to find the underlying cause of your fatigue and take appropriate treatment.

Fatigue is a common sign that your body feels tired and needs rest. However, if you’re experiencing persistent and unexplained fatigue that disrupts your daily life, then, maybe your fatigue is caused by hormonal imbalances or hormones-related conditions that require medical attention to find the underlying cause and get the necessary treatment to cure the issue and lead a better life.

If you are experiencing chronic fatigue as well, visit our endocrinology clinic in Brooklyn to get the best medical service that cures your problem and give you tips to maintain good health. Our endocrinologists will diagnose your condition and treat it accordingly so that you can live a better life. Visit our endocrinology clinic in Brooklyn for professional help. Call us on +1-347-384-5690 and get answers to all your queries. Log on to or visit us at 1797 Pitkin Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11212 to book an appointment with our endocrinologist to get the best treatment. We have the best endocrinologists who treat these kinds of diseases and helpful staff to aid you during your treatment.