Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is fatigue that is not eased by rest and is not caused by another health problem. People with CFS may also have joint and muscle pain, headaches, and other problems that get in the way of their daily routine.
There is no cure. CFS symptoms are managed with changes to lifestyle habits, diet, counseling, and medicine. Some people turn to natural therapies to further ease symptoms.
These therapies may help ease fatigue:
Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.
Talk to your doctor about any supplements or therapy you would like to use. Some can interfere with treatment or make conditions worse.
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Herbs and Supplements
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B3. Castro-Marrero J, Sáez-Francás N, et al. Effect of coenzyme Q10 plus nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide supplementation on maximum heart rate after exercise testing in chronic fatigue syndrome – A randomized, controlled, double-blind trial. Clin Nutr. 2016;35(4):826-834.
B4. Corbitt M, Campagnolo N, et al. A Systematic Review of Probiotic Interventions for Gastrointestinal Symptoms and Irritable Bowel Syndrome in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME). Probiotics Antimicrob Proteins. 2018 Sep;10(3):466-477.
B5. Wang YY, Li XX, et al. Traditional Chinese medicine for chronic fatigue syndrome: a systematic review of randomized clinical trials. Complement Ther Med. 2014 Aug;22(4):826-833.
C1. Larun L, Bruberg KG, et al. Exercise therapy for chronic fatigue syndrome. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2017;4:CD003200.
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D3. Campagnolo N, Johnston S, et al. Dietary and nutrition interventions for the therapeutic treatment of chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis: a systematic review. J Hum Nutr Diet. 2017 Jun;30(3):247-259.
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Last reviewed November 2019 by EBSCO NAT Review Board Eric Hurwitz, DC Last Updated: 5/28/2020