Your lifestyle habits may be the reason why you always feel tired. A registered nutritional therapist shares the most common reasons why people feel tired and how to boost their energy levels.
Jackie Lynch wrote in her book “Va Va Voom: the 10-Day Energy Diet” some of the lifestyle habits that people make that make them wired. Here are six lifestyle habits that zap your energy:
Eating less protein – One of the responsibilities of protein is to fill you up and energize you during a busy day. It is also involved in the regulation of blood sugar as it helps to slow down the release of carbohydrates in the body, ensuring more sustained energy. If you lack protein, you may lack muscle tone, crave for sugar or carbohydrates, or have brittle nails. Eating protein-rich foods, such as meat, fish, eggs, pulses, quinoa, nuts, and seeds, will help balance blood sugar levels and energize you.
Following a low-carbohydrate diet – Carbohydrates are needed for mental and physical energy. Thus, a low-carbohydrate diet can make you feel bloated, get easily sick, or reduce low physical performance. To sustain energy, the best option is to eat fiber-rich complex carbohydrates that do not burn quickly, such as whole grains, vegetables, and pulses.
Consuming too much caffeine – Over-relying on caffeine can lead to insomnia or poor sleep quality, feeling wired, and nervousness or anxiety. Caffeine can provide a fast energy boost, but excessive amounts can be bad. It stimulates insulin response, which removes sugar from the blood. Thus, too much caffeine can result to a drop in blood sugar and energy depletion. Moreover, caffeine can prevent the body from absorbing plant sources of iron, inhibiting the production of hemoglobin and the transportation of oxygen — which are need for the cells to produce energy. Limit your intake of coffee, tea, energy drinks, cola, and chocolate to avoid energy depletion.
Being physically inactive – If you do not move enough, you may experience pain in the lower back, constipation, or sluggishness or lethargy. Moderate exercise can energize you when you feel tired. It enhances circulation, transporting oxygen throughout the body to help in energy production. Regular exercise helps to lower stress levels that takes up energy, and improves mental energy by releasing serotonin and endorphins. Moreover, light exercises can also boost energy levels by about 20 percent. To relieve sluggishness, a brisk 15-minute walk daily can help.
Not drinking enough water – Staying hydrated is important because water supports the circulatory system, which transports nutrients and oxygen throughout the body so the cells can produce energy. Dehydration can reduce strength, speed, and stamina, as well as impair mental energy. The amount of water needed by the body depends on a person's age, build, level of physical activity, and environmental temperatures.
Depending on alcohol to unwind – If you habitually drink a glass or two of wine every night can affect your long-term energy levels. It may relax you and help you fall asleep faster, but it may make you feel unrefreshed when you wake up. Moreover, alcohol intake can deplete B vitamins, which is involved in energy production. Moreover, the combination of sugar and stimulants in alcohol interrupts blood sugar levels, which leads to a blood sugar crash and energy slump. Furthermore, it disrupts energy metabolism. To avoid these, do not drink alcohol for at least three consecutive days.
Eating or drinking energy-rich foods is an alternative way for a healthy, natural energy boost. These include lemon water, fresh fruits, nuts, dark chocolate, whole-grain toast, cardamom, asparagus, sauerkraut, brown rice, and spinach.