Feeling tired every now and then is normal, but if you are experiencing consistent periods where you feel dragged down, unenergetic, and constantly looking forward to laying your head on your pillow at night, you may need to take a second look at how you are treating yourself. Read the following tips to help you regain your spunk:
1. Sugar has a tendency to be a craving and a curse all at once. It tastes good going down and keeps you from feeling ‘up’. When you crave something sweet, its important to have something else ready and available to eat instead. Try to choose snacks that have a small amount of carbohydrates to give you a measurable amount of energy for your day like whole grain crackers and low-fat cheese, fresh fruit or a small box of raisins and low-fat cheese or plain, nonfat
yogurt blended with fruit.
2. Caffeine is another substance that will give us the wake up call that we need, but leave us hanging later on. Try to choose the decaffeinated version of your favorite beverage like coffee, tea or cola and avoid using caffeine to help you stay awake; this will only throw off your natural sleep cycle and promote your low energy levels.
3. Dehydration – With our busy lifestyles, it is easy to forget to drink water throughout the day. We need water to flush out toxins, keep our energy levels elevated and to keep our tissues hydrated. It contains no calories, so you can drink as much of it as you want to, and if you need some variety, add a lemon or lime slice to it. You can also make homemade lemonade with lemon, water and a small amount of sugar or artificial sweetener.
4. Exercise –Whether or not you exercise consistently, the amount of exercise that you get (or don’t get) could be contributing to your lack of energy. While exercise energizes us physically, mentally and emotionally, we feel more sluggish without it. On the other hand, when we do exercise, it enhances our mood by releasing endorphins, a ‘feel good’ chemical that increases energy levels. Hopefully it will encourage us to exercise more…. but not too much. Overtraining will deplete your energy reserves, break down muscle and make you feel weaker instead of stronger. Exercising too much could suppress your immune system, which could increase your chances of a bacterial or viral invasion, making you more vulnerable to illness. So make sure that you stay in control of your workout sessions and the frequency of them.
You (and you alone!) are in control of your own energy levels, so choose to eat the right foods and drink the right beverages to boost your energy instead of bring it down.
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