Lack of energy?
5 simple things to do to boost your energy.
Do you feel a lack of energy? Are you fatigued or sleepy all the time? Most of us know what it’s like to be tired once in a while, especially when we’re stressed or hungry. But when it seems like an everyday thing, you want to fix it.
When you know what contributes to this lack of energy, then you can address it. A lack of energy can have many causes and the good news is that you have control over a lot of these.
Here I will share my secrets for a life full of energy.
Have a positive attitude and a positive state of mind
Your mindset is very important and can have a profound effect on your energy levels. Where your focus goes your energy goes. A pessimistic or negative attitude drains your energy. Science has proven that a grateful person—someone that looks on the bright side of things—secretes more “feel good” chemicals in their bodies. Some of those substances are dopamine and serotonin and, in addition to helping you feel better, they also help improve your energy. If you want to start feeling more energized follow these tips to help you have a more positive state of mind:
- Take a quick look at your mental attitude.
- Start every morning by spending a minute or two to give thanks for something—anything in your life—even for having your legs or your eyes. Then, go about how you are going to make your day the best day of your life.
- Focus on what you can control.
- Be social and spend quality time with loved ones
Be physically active
When you’re feeling sleepy all the time from a lack of energy, the last thing you probably want to do is exercise. On the other hand, not being physically active can be part of the reason you feel tired all the time. Move more to boost your energy in the long run.
Studies show that by moving more, especially if you’re fairly sedentary to begin with, you can reduce your fatigue. A recent study showed that just three hours per week of moderate to intense aerobic activity can improve sleep and reduce fatigue in as little as four weeks in women.
Tips to be more physically active:
- Find an activity you enjoy and start small, working your way to longer and stronger workouts.
- Walk wherever you can and increase your speed to a brisk walk to exercise your heart.
- Ramp up your activity as you get stronger, but don’t overdo it (over-exercising can drain your energy)
Eat a nutritious diet
When we are lacking energy, we often grab a convenient or tasty snack. We don’t have the energy to make something wholesome and nutritious from scratch.
Your body needs all of the essential nutrients to have enough energy for physical and mental processes. Fatigue can be a sign that you need certain vitamins or minerals—or enough food if you’re not eating enough to fuel your body.
Tips to eat a nutritious diet:
- Make half of your plate fruits and vegetables.
- Choose whole grains more often (brown rice and whole-grain pasta and bread).
- Find recipes that excite you and make extra so you don’t have to cook from scratch every time.
Drink more water
Dehydration can cause fatigue. Your body needs enough water every day to perform optimally—both physically and mentally. Even mild dehydration can affect your ability to think properly. In fact, just 2% dehydration can impair your performance in tasks that require attention, psychomotor, and short-term memory skills.
Your daily water intake will come mostly from drinking water, but that is not your only source of water. You can also get water from high-water foods (e.g., fruits and vegetables). A daily water intake of 3.7 L for adult men and 2.7 L for adult women meets the needs of most people. Some things like strenuous physical exercise and heat can greatly increase your daily water needs above these levels.
Tips to drink more water:
- Drink water with meals.
- Keep a water bottle or a glass visible to you all the time. This will help you be aware of your water intake.
- If you prefer flavor, add fruit to your water, like berries or sliced lemons.
Get more sleep
It’s difficult getting enough sleep when you’re so busy and stressed. Sleep is often one of the first things to go when we feel that way. Maybe because you don’t have enough hours in the day to do what you need to do or maybe you simply can’t fall or stay asleep at night.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, adults need at least 7 hours of sleep each night to be healthy. Getting too little (<6 hours)—or too much (>9 hours)—sleep can increase your risk for heart disease and stroke, certain cancers, and even cognitive decline. This is especially true if you suffer from sleep disorders like insomnia or sleep apnea.
Tips to get more sleep:
- Stick with a daily schedule so you’re going to sleep and waking up at around the same time every day, even on weekends.
- Avoid screens like TVs or phones around bedtime.
- Create a relaxing bedtime routine and do it every evening.
Lack of energy summary
There are many things you can do to alleviate a lack of energy. Five things to try are to have a positive attitude, be physically active, eat a nutritious diet, drink more water, and get more sleep.
If you have a persistent lack of energy or these self-care tips are not helping, you should see your doctor to help identify the root cause of your fatigue. Or call our office to make an appointment.
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