The Vicious Circle of ME/CFS

To date there has been no proven cause of ME / CFS but we do know that the stress response hormones (such as cortisol) are at abnormal levels. As well as this, people with ME / CFS know that their symptoms gets worse with mental, emotional and physical stress. Although everyone has a different experience in the onset of ME / CFS, generally it falls into three categories:

  1. For some there was a period of pressure on the person which was difficult to cope with either physically, emotionally or mentally prior to ME / CFS developing. In situations like this the pressure starts to have a biological effect on the body as the stress response hormones become abnormal.
  2. Others come from fairly difficult family backgrounds where there was a lot of stress. In situations like this, stress responses become abnormal from a young age. This means that biologically you do not cope with stress well and eventually this can lead to conditions such as ME / CFS developing.
  3. Some people experienced an infection or a toxin which lead to ME / CFS. It is very likely that your body was already suffering from abnormal stress responses or that you became very stressed by the infection or toxin’s appearance.

Regardless of exactly how the development of ME / CFS took place, the fact that there is a parallel between stress and your symptoms worsening means stress is a major factor in keeping you ill. When the body is under too much stress, we cannot heal. Abnormal stress responses lead to fatigue, muscle pain, joint pain, changes in body temperature, brain fog, problems sleeping, digestion discomfort, depression or low moods and anxiety – all the symptoms one gets with ME / CFS.

ME / CFS is a condition that is not only caused by stress, but stress keeps you stuck – your body has a chemical imbalance meaning you can no longer handle any stress….and by any we mean any! – even the slightest negative thought is keeping you ill!!

  • Your body has lost balance due to stress
  • Abnormal stress hormones are firing in your body meaning you cannot cope with ANY, EVEN A LITTLE, physical, mental or emotional stress without the abnormal stress hormones firing.
  • Your thoughts are low as are your feelings and you feel bad physically because you are ill.
  • Your low thoughts, low feelings and physical illness activate abnormal stress hormones which sets up an ME / CFS Vicious Circle between your body and mind.
  • You have lost control to ME / CFS

Now that you understand about the Vicious Circle, read on to find out how you can positively intervene on the next page Why How to Heal Works.