Many of us complain about feeling tired and lacking energy. The good news is that there are a number of ways that we can boost our energy levels.
Firstly, it is important to rule out any underlying condition such as chronic fatigue or fibromyalgia, but there are still a raft of reasons for low energy levels. These include:
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Poor diet
- Food intolerances
- Blood sugar fluctuations
- Low thyroid levels
- Lack of sleep
- Depression or
- Side effect of medications.
The first four reasons all revolve around food and as our fuel for our bodies, it is crucial that we get this right. In the absence of food intolerances, an ideal day would look something like this:
- Start the morning with a hot water and fresh lemon drink.
- Take a probiotic.
- Enjoy breakfast of cereal and protein.
- Add in snacks through the day. Dates, nuts, granola mix and fruit all make great choices.
- For lunch, combine proteins with good, complex carbohydrates to balance blood sugars and give long lasting energy. Low GI, complex carbs include brown rice, wholemeal bread, pasta and kumara.
- Reduce your carbohydrates at dinner but again eat protein (fish and chicken are ideal) and plenty of vegetables.
- Drink plenty of water through the day.
It is important to consider any food intolerances you might have. Symptoms can include fatigue, headaches, skin complaints, digestive disorders, depression and weight problems. You can be intolerant to healthy foods or combinations of food and if eaten, can reduce the absorption of nutrients. Keeping a food and symptom diary of foods you have eaten and when, and reactions to the foods can help you find patterns. Alternatively, you can opt to have an intolerance test done.
What else can I do?
You can request that a blood test be done to check your levels of key nutrients. Adequate levels of vitamin B12, iron and thyroxine are crucial to performing at your best. Check what side effects your medicines have – our pharmacists are happy to check this for you, simply give us a call or email. Supplements can also be helpful, particularly if blood tests show deficiencies.
Even with normal levels of nutrients, Spirulina can give you a nice boost, especially if you are exercising regularly or recuperating. Rich in phytonutrients, iron and iodine it is great to boost immunity and energy levels. Co-Enzyme Q10 is a key co-factor in the body for energy production and antioxidant effects. MitoQ is a nice formulation of Co-Enzyme Q10 that reaches the mitochondria (the power house of each cell) in high levels. There it energises the cells, supports skin and organ health, boosts energy levels and reduces free radical damage that causes the effects of ageing.