Chronic Exhaustion

Hello Everyone! This be my first post, I need some help pretty bad!

I’m a vegan in Canada. I’ve lived here for 2 years getting my Masters degree, and have been a vegan for a bit over a year. Since I’ve began I’ve been having issues with keeping energized. For a while this would be more of an annoyance, and I’d shrug it off. But, in the past few months this has become chronic and causing me major problems.

Here are my symptoms:

  • Needing to sleep much more than usual. Previously (say, last summer), I’d only sleep 7 hours a night. Now its up to 9-10.
  • Sometimes for most of a day I’ll be extremely exhausted and will pretty much sit in a couch and try to do work but my mind will be extra fuzzy. I think this happens more after I exercise (I bike 8k round trip when I go to school) but I can’t say for sure.
  • I have a patch of irritated skin on my arm that doesn’t ever seem to heal. Maybe that is a symptom?
  • I’m hungry a lot. Part of that I know is common as a vegan, but figure I’d mention it.

Here’s what I know:

  • I know I suffer pretty badly from Seasonal Affective Disorder. The last winter I was here I wasn’t vegan yet and it was a huge problem. But, last winter I didn’t take anything to help with the vit-D, and while it was bad, it wasn’t this bad.
  • I am working pretty hard on my thesis and its always on my mind. It use to stress me out pretty bad, I’ve dealt with that stress somewhat but some of it will never go away.
  • Bloodwork I had done a few months ago that I got the results from a week ago said that my vitamin-D was dangerously low. My B’s were fine and I wasn’t anemic. I am taking supplements to hopefully deal with the D’s. This time of year in Canada it is impossible to get vit-D from the sun. When I was back in Virginia for christmas I know I felt a lot better, and I bet some of that is the sunlight.
  • I spent the past 2 days looking at everything I have been eating, looking up the in depth nutrition information on what I eat. I know that I was pretty low on calcium, iron and zinc. My protein also might be low, depending on what metric I look at. I’m correcting these now, but I dont’ know if that will make me feel better and if so when.

I talked to a doctor at my Uni last week, but it was a pretty frustrating, horrible experience. She spent a few minutes telling me that I was making horrible diet choices, trying to convince me to not be Vegan. I then explained to her that my Vegan choice was based mostly on ethics, but she didn’t actually try to help me with my diet.

Sorry for such a long post, but I feel you guys need to see everything I know to maybe give me advice. There are also very few vegans where I am, so info from others is scarce. Thanks so much! Ask me anything.