Did you know that what you do throughout the day has a lot to do with your energy levels? That includes what you don’t do as well. What, when, and how much you eat, drink, play, work, and sleep make up the elements of your body’s energy stock.
Does waking up in the morning feel like a clumsy beginning to the day?
Do you usually find yourself lethargic and less enthusiastic in your workplace?
Do you feel exhausted towards the end of the day?
Then it is obvious – your energy levels are low and you surely need to supercharge!
The zeal (or lack of it) to do an activity depends on your energy levels. At times, this could be critical to your performance at work or even your progress in life. You surely do not want to be in a tight spot because of a lack of energy.
Here are 10 health tips to boost your energy levels and keep you active throughout the day. You can have a relaxing sleep for a fresh morning the next day. These tips can help you supercharge and maintain a healthy circle of life.
Take the Magic Potion – Magnesium
There are tons of articles on the internet to guide you on what you should have for a balanced diet throughout the day. What you should really have more of than most vitamins and minerals is Magnesium.
Samantha Heller, MS, RD, a nutritionist from New York University, says, “In a study done at the Human Nutrition Research Center in Grand Forks, women with magnesium deficiencies had higher heart rates and required more oxygen to do physical tasks than they did after their magnesium levels were restored. Their bodies were working harder which, over time, can leave you feeling exhausted.”
The recommended daily intake of magnesium is around 300mg for women and 350mg for men. To be sure you’re getting enough, Heller suggests:
- Add a handful of almonds, cashews, or hazelnuts to your daily diet.
- Increase your intake of whole grains, particularly oats, corn, and quinoa.
- Eat more fish, especially salmon, mackerel, and halibut.
Walk Around to Boost Energy
If you find moving around to be a tiring activity, walking might make you even more exhausted. But it would surprise you to know that increasing physical activity—particularly walking—boosts your energy, especially your lung capacity. You will notice a significant improvement in your breathing.
Earlier, you would be breathless after walking a few meters or climbing just 4 stairs. But after regular walks, you would easily cover a longer distance without suffocation. The more you walk, the better you breathe. It gets more energetic and fun the longer the distance you cover.
Robert Thayer, Ph.D., at California State University, conducted experiments and found a brisk 10-minute walk not only increased energy, but the effects lasted up to two hours. And when continued for three weeks, the daily 10-minute walks improved the overall energy levels and elevated moods.
Add More Exercises to Your Daily Schedule
Exercise almost guarantees that you’ll sleep more deeply. It also gives your cells more energy to burn and circulate oxygen. Exercising causes your body to release epinephrine and norepinephrine. These stress hormones, in modest amounts, can make you feel energized.
Regular exercise is one of the best ways to stay healthy and keep your energy level up. However, getting regular exercise with a demanding job may be challenging. Working out at the workplace is favorable, but not possible for everyone, so it’s up to you to try things out and see what works best.
Be Sure to Take a Power Nap
Research has shown that both information overload and pushing our brains too hard can pull down our energy levels. But studies by many mental health institutions found a simple antidote for this hyperactivity. A 30-minute “power nap” can not only reverse the mind-numbing effects of information overload but may also help you better retain what you have learned.
Power naps can recharge you so you can be more productive and creative, enhance learning and memory, and prevent stress. It can help improve productivity and alertness and also help lower your risk for heart disease. But make sure your nap isn’t too short (or too long), and you’ll feel more than pleasant at your workplace.
Never Skip Your Most Important Meal—Breakfast
It is in the morning that you need the most energy. So, never skip your hearty breakfast, and continue eating healthy meals throughout the day. This will help you overcome fatigue and crashes during your productive time.
“Studies show that folks who eat breakfast report being in a better mood, and have more energy throughout the day,” says Heller. Her personal theory, she says, “is that breaking the fast soon after rising supplies your body with a jolt of fuel that sets the tone for the whole day.”
Foods with a low glycemic index absorb sugar slowly. It may help you avoid the lag in energy. Such foods include whole grains, high-fiber vegetables, nuts, and healthy oils such as olive oil.
Ever wondered why food tastes delicious when you are hungry? National Institute of Physiological Sciences in Osaka, Japan published details of a study that explains the relationship between appetite and taste.
The Hypothalamus, a region in the forebrain that coordinates thirst, hunger, and other homeostatic systems of your body, lowers the bitter taste of food and enhances the sweetness of dessert. So, when you are hungry, the neurons near the hypothalamus get activated. This would then spread to the taste buds on the tongue, making the food more delectable.
When you skip breakfast, you may probably starve by lunchtime and end up gorging too much on just about any food. This is unhealthy and can lead to digestive ailments.
Be Friendly to Reduce Stress
Like worry or fear, stress can drain you mentally and physically, even if you’ve spent the day in bed. Baard, a sports psychologist at Fordham University in the Bronx, N.Y. says “Stress is the result of anxiety, and anxiety uses up a whole lot of our energy.”
More commonly, he says, “low but chronic levels of stress erode energy levels”. So, over time, you may do less work and feel the burden more.
Co-workers can distract and annoy at times. But being friendly with them can really do wonders and make work a lot less stressful. In fact, one study even found that people who were always friendly with their coworkers actually lived longer.
As long as you keep yourself from getting distracted, colleagues can actually leverage your productivity and good health. It can surely put you ahead of the game.
Drink More Water, Less Alcohol
One of the earliest symptoms of the feeling of fatigue is a shortage of fluids in your body. Did you know it can also disguise thirst as fatigue? Sometimes, even slight dehydration can leave you feeling dizzy, tired, or lethargic.
The remedy is simple: a glass of cool water. After a vigorous workout, your body will probably crave fluids. Therefore, it is essential to boost your energy by hydrating with a glass of water.
On the contrary, Heller says if you find yourself frequently fatigued even after a good night’s sleep, try cutting down on alcohol during the evening hours. “While alcohol initially helps you fall asleep, it also interferes with deep sleep, so you’re not getting the rest you think you are — even if you sleep a full eight hours,” she says.
If at all you will drink alcohol, do so in moderation when you can afford to have your energy low.
Check Your Thyroid Function and Complete Blood Cell Count
Pathological lab tests may be a good indicator of your energy levels. If you are constantly low on energy and feeling dull even after a good night’s rest, Heller says you should consult with your doctor about a blood test for thyroid dysfunction and anemia.
If you’re diagnosed with low thyroid function, medication in the correct dosage can bring your energy levels back to normal. Likewise, in anemia, says Heller, a reduction in red blood cells can mean your body isn’t getting the level of oxygen necessary to sustain energy. So, you tire easily and frequently.
Do Your Personal Rituals that Sustain Your Stability
We all have those soulful rituals in our lives that help us get past the challenges of the day and stay sane. Whether you enjoy a private moment to meditate or make time to read a book, those simple rituals are energy boosters that gently revive your physical and mental health.
However silly it may sound, some personal stuff during the day—be it a relaxing post-lunch cup of tea after a power nap or playing a crossword puzzle—can really improve your mental and physical agility.
It’s essential to have healthy activities, or else unhealthy ones can take root. So, never neglect them!
Having a good daily routine that pushes the right buttons of our senses can go a long way.
Work Smart, Not Harder
Do you want a secret mantra to be energetic at your workplace? Use your time and skill efficiently and conduct the most important work during your body’s high-energy hours. Minimizing your time on social media or avoiding unproductive tasks can give you more time to think and plan. Organizing, prioritizing, and scheduling the tasks can bring you nearer to your goals and achieve your objectives.
If you’re wasting time on tasks that should take lesser time, that’s important to realize. That way, the next time you’re overloaded with an unimportant task, you can snap yourself out of it and move on to something more worthwhile.
The smarter you work, the lesser time you have to spend sweating out on everything you have to do.
All the activities of your body and mind need energy which is supplied from the diet as calories. Energy fuels your body’s internal functions. It repairs, builds, and maintains the cells and body tissues. It supports your body’s external activities that enable you to interact and co-exist with the physical world.
Energy level varies with age, gender, body composition, health condition, and activity level. What is ideal for you may not be appropriate for others. So, know your body well and fulfill its needs to keep your energy levels optimized. Proper diet and regular exercise can keep you physically fit and energetic. But you also need to maintain your mental health. A holistic lifestyle can keep your body, mind, and soul in harmony.