20 proven ways to boost your energy levels and stay active throughout the day.
Lack of concentration, tiredness, fatigue, frustration and laziness are signs that your energy levels are getting low. This is normal and a result of the hectic lifestyles we all follow. Fortunately there are natural and easy ways to increase your energy levels and get back on track. These energy boosters are related to your diet, feelings and activities and can produce great results in a short amount of time. The next time you get the feeling that your batteries are running out of energy, reload them by applying our 20 tips below.
Eat breakfast high in carbs and fiber
As shown by a study in the International Journal of food sciences and nutrition, people who eat breakfast which is high in carbs and fiber are more active between breakfast and lunch. If you are short of time in the morning a high fiber cereal with low fat milk can give you the energy boost you need until lunch time.
Eat seeds and nuts as snacks
Magnesium found in seeds and nuts is necessary to keep your energy at high levels. Research identified that people who lack magnesium experience a drop in their energy levels as well. A handful of almonds, cashews or hazelnut as a midday snack can keep your magnesium levels at the recommended level.
Eat fish twice per week
Fish is among the healthiest foods to eat. It is loaded with lean protein, omega-3 fatty acids, essential vitamins and important minerals. Regular consumption of fish lowers blood pressure, reduces the risk of heart diseases and promotes overall body health which in turn makes you energetic.
Eat small frequent energy boosting meals
Eating smaller meals and snacks every few hours is better than having 3 large meals a day. This approach will not only boost your metabolism but will constantly feed your brain with nutrients to keep it active. Foods that have a low GI give you more energy by keeping blood sugar levels at constant levels. Examples include whole grains, fruits and vegetables, seeds and nuts, brown rice, low fat dairy and legumes.
Take a quick walk in the morning
Walking for 10 minutes can increase you energy. A study even showed that a 10 minute walk is a better energy booster than a candy bar! Making the habit to walk for 10 minutes early in the morning (before breakfast) has many other benefits. It can help you burn calories, increase your metabolism, wake up your body organs and prepare your appetite for a rich breakfast.
Take a power nap
Fatigue and loss of energy may be the result of a tired brain. A great way, which is proven to work, is to take a short power nap just after lunch. Not only you will boost your energy levels but is also good for the heart and a great stress reliever.
Exercise in the afternoon
After work or an exhausting day in the office you feel tired and the last thing you want to do is exercise. People who have tried though say otherwise. Exercise can give you mental and physical energy to continue your day. The benefits of exercise are well known for health and wellness but it’s also a great source of energy for your cells and will help you sleep better at night.
Manage your anger and remain calm
Angry feelings act as energy killers. Learning how to manage anger and remain calm in weird situations reduces tension and increases your energy levels.
Stay hydrated throughout the day
Dehydration (even in a low form) can generate feelings of fatigue. The best energetic drink which is also vital for normal body functioning is water. A class of water every couple of hours can also boost your weight loss efforts.
Stress is exhausting for the brain, stomach and body. Managing stress successfully will leave you more energy for other more importing things. Popular methods to eliminate stress include but not limited to relaxation, meditation, yoga and hanging out with friends and family.
Set priorities for the day
You probably have a lot of things to do and not enough time. This is why setting priorities for the day is important. Create a list with your most important tasks at the top and those that are less important towards the end. Refine your list and delete tasks that offer no real value and try to optimize the use of your time. Spend your energy wisely and on things that matter most.
Drink Coffee in moderation
Many people look for coffee and caffeine products when they need an energy booster. It is truth that caffeine increases alertness but moderation is the key. Overconsumption of coffee causes insomnia and fatigue the next day.
Limit alcohol consumption and smoking
Alcohol consumption before night sleep will make you tired the next day even if you sleep 7-8 hours. Avoid drinking alcohol at night and especially 3-4 hours before bed time.
According to research nicotine, among other problems it creates to your overall health, it also stimulates the brain, increases blood pressure and causes insomnia. Insomnia will drain all your energy the next day and if this continues of a number of days you feel exhausted and weak.
Try belly breathing
Belly breathing or diaphragmatic breathing can boost your energy, help you relax and fight stress. It’s a simple technique that only takes a couple of minutes. All you have to do is sit down, relax, breath in from your nose and breathe out slowly from your mouth. Repeat this process a couple of times while taking a short break from work or when you are under stressful conditions.
Get a good night’s sleep the night before
I’ve mention this many times so far and perhaps it’s the most important point. Your energy levels for the day depend on last night’s sleep. 7-8 hours of continuous sleep is the optimum for adults. Avoid intense exercise and alcohol consumption before going to bed and make sure you read our 6 tips for better sleep to improve your sleep quality.
Sugar is a short term energy booster
Many people believe that sugar is an energy booster but this is true only for the short term. Sugar can boost your energy temporary but the drop in blood sugar levels later makes you tired. What is important is to keep blood sugar levels constant and avoid sudden rise and drops. The best food type for energy is whole grains which provide a steady and slow release of fuel to the body.
Stretching and regular breaks
If you are doing manual work make sure you do 5 minute breaks for resting. If you do office work, sitting all day long in front of a computer monitor, get up and stretch your legs, arms and hands. Stretching gives you more energy by decreasing muscle discomfort.
Improve your mood
Mood and energy are cross related. You may be having a bad mood because you don’t have enough energy and you don’t feel energetic because you have a bad mood. Taking a massage, having a good laugh, watching a funny video or movie are great ways to change your mood.
Follow your body clock
Our body has a preferred ‘clock’ and if you learn to respect it you can maximize energy use. Some people are more efficient in the morning while others perform better in the afternoon or at night. A good way to find out what’s your body clock is to keep a schedule (sleep, eat, wake up) the same time each day. Once you find the best performing time, you can increase productivity and make better use of your energy.
Listen to your favorite music
Many studies over the years identified the role of music as an energy booster. High frequency sounds provide energy by effectively distracting the feeling of fatigue. Load your IPod with your favorite songs and get a dose of energy when you need it.