Nutrition News

How to spring out of bed in the morning feeling like a million bucks.

Natalie Butler, RD, LD

Exhausted. Tired. Chronic Fatigue. Sleep-deprived. Afternoon Slump. These are familiar words to millions of Americans. Why is it that so many of us report trouble with our energy levels? Is it our diets? Our lack of exercise? Our sleep habits? It is a combination of these and many other factors.

It seems normal now to not get enough sleep, to brag about how many hours you put in at the office per week, and to schedule time for everyone and everything except taking care of ourselves. Over time it takes its toll.

We become increasingly dependent on caffeine and simple sugars to stimulate us and get us through the day. Then we turn to alcohol and/or hours of TV viewing in the evenings to calm us down or to “relax”. To me, this is not really living, this is just surviving.Wouldn’t you prefer to spring out of bed in the morning feeling like a million bucks? Wouldn’t you love to not even have a thought about needing caffeine in your day? What about feeling excited and ready to tackle a workout?

Though your low energy levels may be due to a complex network of factors, behaviors and diet, follow these tips below to start feeling more energized now!

Sleep. Aim to wake up time and go to sleep time within 60 minutes of the same time every day, with a goal of 7-9 hours a night.

Hydrate. Drink water when you feel tired. Dehydration saps your energy, so the time when you might reach for a pick me up, is the time to drink some water. Starting your day off with ice cold water is an excellent way to wake up yourself!

Food for Energy. To avoid the afternoon slump, around 3pm, eat a combination of protein and carbs for breakfast (like a veggie omelette with fruit) and lunch (a salad with grilled chicken & beans). Protein is important to eat early in the day when cortisol levels are the highest. If you go for candy cereal or only carbs, you will crash early and hard.

Brain Food. If you do hit the afternoon slump, go for brain food, foods that help the brain feel more energized like blueberries, pumpkin seeds, broccoli, nuts or a low sugar B vitamin drink like our vitality blend or greens formula.

Nature. Spend time outside every day. The sunlight actually helps increase your energy…and it’s free!!

Move. Research shows that the more you move, the more energy you’ll have. But you’re too tired to exercise, right? I know it sounds counterintuitive but getting up, walking the dog, chasing your kids around the house, hopping on your bike or hitting the gym actually increases your endorphins and improves your sleep quality. Early in the day is best otherwise it might keep you awake longer.

Nap. Take a short power nap. Just 10 minutes can do the trick! The longer the nap, the more likely you are to feel groggy when you wake up.

Manage Stress. Stress causes poor quality sleep and zaps your daytime energy. To manage your stress, shorten your to-do list, exercise and do deep breathing daily.

Beverages. Get off of stimulants and downers. Caffeine is a short term pick up (usually a 6 hour window) but not without its downfalls. More than 200mg per day increases cortisol levels and can interfere with sleep quality. Alcohol is a downer and although you may fall asleep quickly, you don’t sleep as deeply so you don’t feel as rested the next day.

Hormone Changes. Because hormone changes during “that time of the month” can plummet your energy, minimize the fatigue by eating fruits and veggies, complex carbs, eat more fiber, exercise, and avoid salt and caffeine.

Thyroid. Get your thyroid checked.

See your doctor. If none of these tips help, investigate your low energy further with your doctor.

 


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About the author

Viance Nutrition

Hi! I'm Walt Landi the founder and CEO of Viance Nutrition. Welcome to our Blog. I maintain this Blog as a free resource for anyone wishing to improve their health. Your comments and feedback are always welcomed and you can email me direct at walt@viance.com if you have any suggestions. Thanks. Ps. Spread the word and check out our products at viance.com. :)

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