Scientific Papers on Burnout (CFS/ME)

A collection of scientific papers and qualified articles on the topics of nutrition, as applied to healing Burnout, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, or ME.

Table of Contents:

Burnout / CFS / ME Nutrition Science

Alpha-lipoic Acid

While there are no specific papers on the use of Alpha-lipoic acid in the treatment of Burnout / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome / ME, ther eare two good articles on American ME and CFS Society and Mepedia, included here:

Alpha Lipoic Acid – American ME and CFS Society |

This article provides an overview of Alpha-lipoic acid (ALA), its properties as an antioxidant, and its potential therapeutic effects in various disease states. It highlights the importance of ALA in treating chronic diseases involving oxidative stress and its use in ME/CFS for improving the integrity of red blood cells and elevating glutathione levels.

Alpha-lipoic acid – MEpedia |

MEpedia’s entry on Alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) includes detailed information on its role as an antioxidant, its enantioselective pharmacokinetics, and various studies on its effectiveness in treating conditions like diabetic peripheral neuropathy. It also discusses its relevance in the context of small fiber neuropathy and its relation to conditions such as fibromyalgia.

Acetyl L-Carnitine

Nutrient Therapy for the Improvement of Fatigue Symptoms |

This study discusses the use of Acetyl-L-Carnitine and Propionyl-L-Carnitine in treating Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), showing significant improvements in mental fatigue and attention concentration.

Exploratory Open Label, Randomized Study of Acetyl- and Propionylcarnitine in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome |

This study evaluates the effects of Acetylcarnitine and Propionylcarnitine on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome symptoms, highlighting significant improvements in mental fatigue in patients.

Acetyl L-carnitine (ALC) Treatment in Elderly Patients with Fatigue |

Malaguarnera et al. (2008) conducted a study on elderly subjects, exploring the impact of ALC on fatigue, showing a decrease in physical and mental fatigue and improvements in functional status and cognitive functions.

Mitochondrial Enhancers for ME/CFS: Acetylcarnitine |

This article reviews various studies on ALC in the context of ME/CFS, including a 2008 trial with significant reductions in mental and physical fatigue among fatigued elderly individuals.


There are no current scientific papers published on using Ashwagandha to treat CFS, ME, or burnout, however there is much anecdotal evidence online. We’re including several general papers on Ashwagandha here, however if you’re interested it’s worth reading about Ayurvedic medicine, which has a long history of using Ashwagandha for it’s adaptogenic / anti-stress properties.

Pharmacological evaluation of Ashwagandha highlighting its healthcare claims, safety, and toxicity aspects |

This comprehensive review presents the pharmacological aspects of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), covering its diverse therapeutic properties including anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, and neuro-protective effects. The review also delves into the safety and toxicity profile of Ashwagandha, providing a detailed insight into its clinical applications and health benefits.

An overview on ashwagandha: a Rasayana (rejuvenator) of Ayurveda |

This article offers an in-depth look at Ashwagandha as an essential herb in Ayurvedic medicine. The paper discusses its adaptogenic and anti-stress activities, effects on neurodegenerative diseases, anti-inflammatory properties, and its role as a nervine tonic. The study underscores the importance of Ashwagandha in traditional medicine and highlights the need for large-scale studies to validate its efficacy in various disorders.

Vitamin B2

Vitamin B status in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome |

This study assessed the status of various B vitamins, including riboflavin (Vitamin B2), in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). The research was focused on understanding the role of these vitamins in the condition.

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS): Suggestions for a nutritional treatment in the therapeutic approach |

This review paper discusses the complexity of CFS and the role of nutritional intervention in its management. It highlights the importance of vitamin B complex, among other nutrients, in alleviating the severity of CFS symptoms.

Vitamin B12

Nutrient Therapy for the Improvement of Fatigue Symptoms |

This review examines the impact of various nutrients, including vitamins and minerals, on fatigue symptoms. It covers conditions like fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, cancer, and multiple sclerosis. The role of vitamins, including B12, in alleviating fatigue is discussed in the context of these chronic conditions.

Effects of Vitamin B12 Supplementation on Cognitive Function, Depressive Symptoms, and Fatigue: A Systematic Review, Meta-Analysis, and Meta-Regression |

This study is a systematic review and meta-analysis assessing the effects of vitamin B12 on cognitive function, depressive symptoms, and idiopathic fatigue. It concludes that vitamin B12 supplementation may not be effective in improving cognitive function and depressive symptoms in patients without advanced neurological disorders.

B Complex

Vitamin B status in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome |

Investigation of the functional status of B vitamins in chronic fatigue syndrome patients compared to healthy controls.

Multivitamin mineral supplementation in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome |

A study looking into the effects of multivitamin-mineral supplementation on chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms.

Effect of vitamin B12 on symptom severity and psychological profile in fibromyalgia patients; a prospective pre-post study |

Examines the impact of vitamin B12 on symptom severity and psychological aspects of fibromyalgia, relevant due to symptom overlap with CFS.

Nutrition and Chronobiology as Key Components of Multidisciplinary Therapeutic Interventions for Fibromyalgia and Associated Chronic Fatigue Syndrome |

This review discusses the role of nutrition, including B vitamins, in managing fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

Integrated ‘omics analysis for the gut microbiota response to moxibustion in a rat model of chronic fatigue syndrome |

Analyzes the gut microbiota’s response to treatment in a chronic fatigue syndrome model, where B vitamins play a critical role.

A real-world evidence study evaluating consumer experience of Supradyn Recharge or Supradyn Magnesium and Potassium during demanding periods |

Looks at the efficacy of Supradyn products, which contain B vitamins, in relieving fatigue during high-demand periods.

Vitamin C

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS): Suggestions for a nutritional treatment in the therapeutic approach |

This review focuses on nutritional intervention in CFS, discussing various immunological, environmental, and nutritional aspects investigated in relation to the disease. It highlights the significance of certain nutrient deficiencies, including Vitamin C, in the severity and exacerbation of CFS symptoms.

The value of the dehydroepiandrosterone-annexed vitamin C infusion treatment in the clinical control of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). II. Characterization of CFS patients with special reference to their response to a new vitamin C infusion treatment |

This study investigates the effectiveness of a new vitamin C infusion treatment for chronic fatigue syndrome, emphasizing its value in the clinical control of the condition and characterizing CFS patients’ response to the treatment.

Vitamin and mineral status in chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia syndrome: A systematic review and meta-analysis |

This systematic review and meta-analysis investigate the status of vitamins and minerals in chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia syndrome patients. It examines the relationship between nutrient levels and these syndromes, highlighting the role of Vitamin C among other nutrients.

Coenzyme Q10

Effect of Coenzyme Q10 Supplementation on Fatigue: A Systematic Review of Interventional Studies |

This study reviews the effectiveness of Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) in reducing fatigue across various conditions, including chronic fatigue syndrome. It suggests that CoQ10 shows better therapeutic effects in statin-related fatigue and fibromyalgia but indicates the need for more clinical trials with larger sample sizes for a definitive conclusion.

Mitochondrial Dysfunction and Coenzyme Q10 Supplementation in Post-Viral Fatigue Syndrome: An Overview |

This paper provides an overview of the role of mitochondrial dysfunction in post-viral fatigue syndrome, which includes chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). It explores the effectiveness of Coenzyme Q10 supplementation as a novel therapeutic strategy for these conditions.

Vitamin D

Serum 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels in chronic fatigue syndrome: a retrospective survey |

This paper supported the notion that patients with moderate to severe CFS should maintain adequate sun exposure and consume foods high in vitamin D, with supplementation considered if levels remain low.

Vitamin D status in chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis: a cohort study from the North-West of England |

This study involved a detailed analysis of vitamin D metabolites in CFS/ME patients compared to healthy controls. This study highlighted the importance of vitamin D in the context of CFS/ME, underscoring the need for careful monitoring of vitamin D levels in these patients.

Investigating causality in the association between vitamin D status and self-reported tiredness |

This study used a Mendelian randomization approach to assess the causal influence of genetically lowered vitamin D status on fatigue in the general population. This study adds an interesting genetic perspective to the understanding of how vitamin D status might influence fatigue, a key symptom of CFS


A pilot study employing Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) in the treatment of chronic fatigue syndrome |

This study looks into DHEA supplementation in CFS patients, finding significant reduction in symptoms like pain, fatigue, and anxiety.

Levels of DHEA and DHEAS and responses to CRH stimulation and hydrocortisone treatment in chronic fatigue syndrome |

This paper explores the levels of DHEA and its sulfate form in persons with CFS, offering insights into hormonal imbalances associated with the condition.

A preliminary study of dehydroepiandrosterone response to low-dose ACTH in chronic fatigue syndrome and in healthy subjects |

Research assessing the response of DHEA to ACTH stimulation in CFS patients compared to healthy individuals.

Dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate deficiency in chronic fatigue syndrome |

Investigates the potential deficiency of DHEA sulfate in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome.

Replacement therapy with DHEA plus corticosteroids in patients with chronic inflammatory diseases–substitutes of adrenal and sex hormones |

A review discussing the therapeutic effects of combining DHEA with corticosteroids in the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases.


While there are no perfectly relevant papers on the application of Flaxseed to the diet with the intention to assist burnout recovery, the following paper has some interesting points relating to flax and fatigue.

The effect of flaxseed on physical and mental fatigue in children and adolescents with overweight/obesity: a randomised controlled trial |

This study, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, investigates the impact of flaxseed consumption on mental and physical fatigue in overweight or obese children and adolescents. It highlights that flaxseed may have a beneficial effect on mental fatigue, though its influence on physical fatigue and overall fatigue reduction is less clear.


Ginseng as a Treatment for Fatigue: A Systematic Review |

This review assesses the safety and efficacy of Panax ginseng for fatigue. Analyzing ten studies, it concludes ginseng is promising for treating fatigue in chronic illness, though more diverse research is needed.

Ginseng for the Treatment of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A Systematic Review of Clinical Studies |

This study reviews the impact of ginseng on CFS, finding a potential benefit but highlighting the need for more extensive research due to limited clinical studies and data.

Randomized Controlled Trial of Siberian Ginseng for Chronic Fatigue |

This clinical trial investigates Korean red ginseng’s efficacy for moderate chronic fatigue in middle-aged individuals. It’s a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study.


Potential role of microbiome in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Myalgic Encephalomyelits (CFS/ME) |

This study explores the role of the microbiome in CFS/ME. It includes an analysis of the diversity within the intestinal bacterial community in patients, examining differences in various bacterial taxa and discussing their potential implications for CFS/ME.

Immunomodulatory effects of inulin and its intestinal metabolites |

This research investigates the immunomodulatory effects of inulin and its metabolites, focusing on their role in regulating energy metabolism and immune function. The findings could provide valuable insights into the management of conditions like CFS/ME.

Health Effects and Sources of Prebiotic Dietary Fiber |

This paper summarizes the health benefits of prebiotic dietary fibers, including inulin. It discusses their role in supporting digestive health and the potential implications for conditions like CFS/ME.


The Effect of Parenteral or Oral Iron Supplementation on Fatigue, Sleep, Quality of Life and Restless Legs Syndrome in Iron-Deficient Blood Donors: A Secondary Analysis of the IronWoMan RCT |

This study examines the impact of iron supplementation in iron-deficient blood donors on symptoms associated with iron deficiency, including chronic fatigue syndrome and sleep quality.


There isn’t currently any direct scientific literature focusing specifically on L-Theanine’s effects on Burnout. However, a related study that examines the effects of L-Theanine on individuals with major depressive disorder (MDD) could be of interest since fatigue and depressive symptoms often coexist in many chronic conditions, including CFS/ME.

Effects of chronic l-theanine administration in patients with major depressive disorder: an open-label study |

This study investigates the effects of L-Theanine, found in green tea, on patients with major depressive disorder. In this open-label clinical trial, L-Theanine was added to existing medication for 8 weeks, showing improvements in depressive symptoms, anxiety, sleep disturbances, and cognitive functions. Further placebo-controlled studies are needed for conclusive evidence.


Red blood cell magnesium and chronic fatigue syndrome |

Increase of free Mg2+ in the skeletal muscle of chronic fatigue syndrome patients |


Influence of melatonin on fatigue severity in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome and late melatonin secretion |

This study explored the effect of melatonin in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), particularly those with delayed circadian rhythm. It demonstrated melatonin’s potential in alleviating fatigue severity in CFS patients.

The use of melatonin in the treatment of chronic fatigue syndrome and circadian rhythm disorders in Parkinson’s disease |

This research looked into the use of melatonin in treating CFS symptoms in Parkinson’s disease patients, highlighting melatonin’s role in improving sleep and quality of life.

Dim light melatonin onset (DLMO): a tool for the analysis of circadian phase in human sleep and chronobiological disorders |

This review discusses the use of DLMO as a tool for analyzing circadian phase, which is relevant for understanding and treating conditions like CFS.

Mitochondrial NRG

A systematic review of nutraceutical interventions for mitochondrial dysfunctions in myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome |

This paper is a comprehensive review assessing the efficacy of nutraceutical interventions on mitochondrial dysfunctions in ME/CFS, focusing on treatment results and potential adverse effects.

Mitochondria and immunity in chronic fatigue syndrome |

Exploring the complex relationship between mitochondria, the immune system, and ME/CFS, this publication delves into various factors like the gut microbiome and circadian rhythms.

Metabolic Dysfunction in Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Not Due to Anti-mitochondrial Antibodies |

This study investigates the hypothesis of metabolic dysfunction in ME/CFS being linked to autoantibodies against mitochondrial components, providing detailed analyses and insights.

Mitochondrial dysfunction and the pathophysiology of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) |

This paper discusses mitochondrial dysfunction in ME/CFS, including in-depth analyses of ATP production and mitochondrial biomarkers and their correlation with ME/CFS symptoms.


Effect of Coenzyme Q10 Plus Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NADH) Supplementation on Maximum Heart Rate after Exercise Testing in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – A Randomized, Controlled, Double-Blind Trial |

This study explores the effect of Coenzyme Q10 and NADH supplementation on heart rate responses post-exercise in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome patients.

Effect of Dietary Coenzyme Q10 Plus NADH Supplementation on Fatigue Perception and Health-Related Quality of Life in Individuals with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A Prospective, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial |

This research assesses the impact of CoQ10 and NADH co-supplementation on perceived fatigue and quality of life in ME/CFS patients.

Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NADH) in Patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome |

This clinical trial focuses on the effectiveness of NADH supplementation in treating symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

Does Oral Coenzyme Q10 Plus NADH Supplementation Improve Fatigue and Biochemical Parameters in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome? |

This study investigates the effects of oral CoQ10 and NADH supplementation on fatigue and biochemical parameters in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome patients.

Omega 3,6,9

Long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids and the pathophysiology of myalgic encephalomyelitis (chronic fatigue syndrome) |

This paper discusses the potential association between myalgic encephalomyelitis, also known as chronic fatigue syndrome, and persistent viral infections which may impair the body’s ability to synthesize n-3 and n-6 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids. This impairment could affect cell membrane function, including cell signaling, and the biosynthesis of eicosanoids. Therapeutic possibilities involving the bypassing of enzyme inhibition in fatty acid synthesis are explored.


A Systematic Review of Probiotic Interventions for Gastrointestinal Symptoms and Irritable Bowel Syndrome in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) |

This study conducted a systematic review of gastrointestinal and irritable bowel symptoms in CFS/ME, along with the potential role of probiotics as a treatment. The review included 25 studies and found that while the evidence for using probiotics in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) was excellent, the evidence for CFS/ME was limited and of poor quality, indicating the need for more standardized and higher-quality research in this area.

Are Probiotic Treatments Useful on Fibromyalgia Syndrome or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Patients? A Systematic Review |

This paper reviews the impact of probiotic treatments on fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) and CFS patients. The review included two high-quality studies that suggested probiotics might have significant effects on anxiety and inflammatory processes in CFS patients. However, the evidence remains limited, and the paper calls for more experimental research focused on symptoms of these pathologies.

Role of Gut Microbiota and Probiotic in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome |

This article explores the potential role of gut microbiota and probiotics in managing Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. It delves into the underlying mechanisms and discusses how probiotics could influence CFS symptoms.

The Emerging Role of Gut Microbiota in Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome |

This research highlights the emerging understanding of the gut microbiota’s role in ME/CFS. It reviews the symptoms, such as chronic pain and cognitive dysfunction, and examines how gut microbiota may be involved in these processes.

Reduced diversity and altered composition of the gut microbiome in individuals with myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome |

This study investigates the differences in gut microbiome composition between ME/CFS patients and healthy individuals. It found significant disparities in microbial diversity and composition, providing insight into how these differences might relate to ME/CFS symptoms.

Protein Supplements

While there are no papers directly exploring using protein supplementation in treating CFS or ME, there’s an interesting article here from Mayoclinic on supplements and Chronic Fatigue.

The Role of Nutrition and Supplements in Managing Chronic Fatigue Post-COVID |

This article highlights the importance of good nutrition in managing fatigue symptoms post-COVID-19, which may have similarities to CFS/ME. This includes a balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals, protein, fats, and carbohydrates.

Rhodiola rosea

Rhodiola rosea in Subjects with Prolonged or Chronic Fatigue Symptoms: Results of an Open-Label Clinical Trial |

This open-label clinical trial explored the use of Rhodiola rosea (WS® 1375) in 100 subjects with prolonged or chronic fatigue, reporting significant improvement in fatigue symptoms over 8 weeks with favorable safety assessments.

Evidence-based efficacy of adaptogens in fatigue, and molecular mechanisms related to their stress-protective activity |

This review assesses the scientific evidence for adaptogens, including Rhodiola rosea, in treating fatigue. It provides a detailed examination of the molecular mechanisms behind their stress-protective effects, particularly in improving cognitive function and mental performance in fatigue and chronic fatigue syndrome.

Rhodiola rosea for physical and mental fatigue: a systematic review |

This systematic review covers 11 studies on Rhodiola rosea’s effects on physical and mental fatigue. It highlights the variability in study outcomes and methodologies, indicating the need for more uniform measurement approaches in future research on this topic.