Written by Stacy Chbosky
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Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome, or CFIDS, is a frustrating disease. Little is known about it, and misinformation regarding the syndrome abounds. For instance, many people once believed that CFIDS sufferers lost their fingerprints. For this reason, doctors diagnosing a possible case of CFIDS need to follow a thorough protocol.

Testing for CFIDS

In order to be diagnosed with CFIDS, a patient must experience fatigue that cannot be improved by rest for six months or longer. The patient will also have a host of symptoms that must not have pre-dated the fatigue. These symptoms may include difficulty concentrating, loss of short-term memory, joint pain, muscle pain, sore lymph nodes or unusual headaches. Proper rest and nutrition, including supplements when necessary, are "musts" for sufferers.

People with CFIDS should also begin taking supplements to improve the health of their immune systems. Much evidence points to the powerful impact glutathione levels can have on the health of a person with CFIDS. Glutathione is a tripeptide that naturally occurs in every cell of the human body. In those who are sick, glutathione levels tend to be low. Oral glutathione supplements are not effective, because glutathione is digested and broken down in the stomach, meaning very little actually reaches the bloodstream. It's important to take a precursor or building block of glutathione, and the most important of these is cysteine. Cysteine is best supplied by bioactive undenatured whey proteins. People with CFIDS can benefit from undenatured whey proteins that raise their glutathione back up to a normal, healthy level.

Generally, people who are chronically tired can improve their lot greatly through exercise. Exercise helps many older people to sleep better at night, for instance, and is a great energy boost during the daytime. For patients with CFIDS, however, exercise does not improve their energy. Frequently, it can leave them feeling worse.

Many diseases produce symptoms that are similar to CFIDS symptoms, which is another reason it is so difficult to diagnose. These other ailments usually have to be ruled out before a diagnosis of CFIDS can be given. Sleep apnea, narcolepsy, cancer, chronic mononucleosis, bipolar disorder and eating disorders are just some of the diseases which produce symptoms deceptively similar to CFIDS.

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