Hi. I'm new to this board and not meaning to upset anyone but thought that this thread deserves to be continued and am having a difficult time loading and posting to the original. I am not sure if this is the result of a slow server or other elements of the page or posts that is slowing things down but I suspect it has just gotten too long. I have a fast connection and an up to date and reasonably powerful system. So, I thought I'd repost as a new thread. After 14 years, only one thing is abundantly clear - anything that creates any kind of emotional distress will aggravate symptoms. Bottom line, do nothing unless you are up for it. Absolutely, don't plan or worry about anything. Impossible - yes. But the closer you can come to this ideal the less poorly you will feel. In 2006 the CDC found that CFS is caused by genetic mutations that impair the central nervous system's ability to adapt to stressful situations. The key seems to be this - "allostatic load". That certain genes in the brain react similar to a rubber band under stress. For most people these genes "bounce back". For us the ability to bounce back has diminished or ceased. We were born this way. We weren't born with CFS perhaps but we were born with a different - defective if you will - gene set that has left us predisposed to contracting CFS. The teams found that there were at least four distinct forms of the disease, each with its own genetic profile and symptoms but all including disabling fatigue. Some had relatively mild symptoms, whereas others were debilitating. But all the forms shared genetic mutations — technically called single nucleotide polymorphisms — related to brain activity that mediated the response to stress. Studies suggest this condition is most prevalent in females over 40. I suspect that for women there are often greater stressors in life and by age 40 or so these stressors have taken their toll on these particular genes. But we know that young children have also developed CFS. I suspect that the gene set they were born with was even more delicate or less elastic than mine or others who developed this condition later. I assume "that" elasticity in the genes is in fact very different for all of us and explains the severity of our symptoms or the wide range of symptoms. This research is the only thing I've seen or heard that could apply to all sufferers - the one thing we could all have in common. Not vitamin deficiencies, nor drugs, nor mental problems, nor stuff growing in our colon - but rather a feature of our genetics. Obviously, a good diet is beneficial for anyone. Obviously, getting enough sleep is beneficial for anyone. This research must cause us to re-evaluate what is CFS and to critically examine all research that came before this study. Our best hope is that research currently being conducted in Georgia and future research will result in at least a conclusive method of diagnosis. In time, maybe a way to repair the affected gene or at least prevent the initial damage / mutation of the gene.