In the modern world, energy seems to be in short supply. Between rigid schedules, lack of sleep and the typical stresses of life, your energy reserves may feel totally depleted all the time. While the standard go-to is usually coffee, there are additional, cleaner ways to improve your overall energy levels.
Increase Sleep Efficiency - On average, a person should sleep 7-8 hours every night. However, some find it difficult to either fall asleep or maintain a steady REM sleep. Stretching, for 15-20 minutes prior to sleeping, can help you fall asleep faster and improve overall sleep quality. Check out some yoga stretches to perform prior to sleep.
Reduce Carbohydrate/Increase Protein Consumption - A diet high in carbohydrates (unless heavy training) will lead to inefficient nutrient storage. High consumption of carbohydrates will end up leading to a crash, causing you to feel even more fatigued than before. By reducing carbohydrate intake, your insulin levels will not fluctuate as much, and your energy levels will remain more stable. Protein, on the other hand, is critical in metabolic function, and most people do not take in an adequate amount of it. Increasing protein intake will leave a greater feeling of satiety. Additionally, the amino acids that make up protein will stimulate and improve your metabolism, which should lead to increased energy.
Exercise will keep your metabolism active and improve your overall musculature. Consistent exercise throughout the week will improve blood flow and release endorphins, which in turn improve both your mood and energy levels. Exercise also helps reduce stress and cortisol levels, which weigh heavily on energy. When it comes to exercise, consistency is key, as the results tend to be cumulative.
Water is often lacking in many people's diets or is found in low quantities. Water is crucial for every bodily function, so inadequate water consumption can actually slow many of your body's systems, whereby you begin to feel sluggish and lethargic. The average person should have about 64 oz of water per day, which would be about eight (8) 8 oz glasses.
Swap Coffee for Tea - The effects of coffee can wear out quickly with a crash, especially if the coffee has sugar. Forms of tea, such as green tea, tend to yield a smoother energy boost that can last longer. It is also not as hard on the stomach and cleaner for your system. There are refined versions of green tea such as Matcha, which have more potency. Drinking a few cups of tea over the course of the day will give you a natural high without being hard on your system.
Check Your Thyroid Function and Complete Blood Cell Count - Poor thyroid function (hyper- or hypo-activity) can lead to hormonal imbalances and greatly hamper your energy levels. Another condition, anemia, means that you have a reduced red blood cell count, which means that there is not an adequate amount of oxygen being transported through the body. You should check with your doctor to rule out these conditions.
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