Fatigue is a common condition among adults. Sleep disorders are one of the major health issues that experts focus on because of how vital sleep is to our health—and because of how easy it is to neglect.
Fatigue happens for several reasons, but for many people, it’s the result of not getting enough regular and consistent sleep. Research has linked poor sleep quality with chronic illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease and even shortened life expectancy. Fatigue also has its share of immediate risks, including impaired driving and other safety concerns. Productivity and focus at work can also dwindle due to a lack of rest.
If you find yourself fatigued most mornings, as 38% of adult Americans reportedly do, then it’s essential to look at your lifestyle habits, including your sleep, exercise and the types of food you eat that contribute to chronic fatigue. Instead of automatically reaching for another cup of coffee for a quick fix, try building healthier habits that help you get natural energy and maintain endurance.
Here are eight of the top natural energy boosters for fighting fatigue. These tips will help you address some of the possible underlying causes playing a role in your lack of energy.
Eating natural energy foods is foundational not just to your energy levels but to your overall health. Food and nutrition are also vital to disease-prevention and longevity. Natural energy foods keep our various systems operating at their optimal levels for proper health. However, eating too much of the wrong foods can lead to nutrient deficiencies and conditions that affect metabolism and cause chronic fatigue.
To help sustain energy, it’s important to avoid high-glycemic foods that cause a blood sugar spike, resulting in the inevitable crash. Natural energy foods are high in protein and fat content and are low on the glycemic index, meaning their sugars are absorbed by the body slowly and provide a longer-lasting energy source.
Certain nutritional deficiencies cause sluggishness and an inability to focus. If you aren’t getting enough nutrients from your regular diet, you can take natural energy supplements to help compensate and ensure you’re getting enough nutrition.
A common supplement taken to help boost energy and mental clarity is B complex—a group of eight B vitamins. Known as the “energy vitamins”, B vitamins are vital for converting food into usable energy. Nutrition from B vitamins ensures the proper functioning of several body systems, including the circulatory and nervous systems. B vitamins can only be obtained through food sources such as meat, fish and eggs or by taking natural energy supplements.
Other supplements that may boost energy levels include iron, zinc and magnesium. Though dietary supplements aren’t a substitute for food-based nutrition, they can be beneficial for people who notice a difference in their energy levels when taking them.
Many people don’t exercise as intensely or as often as they should because they get exhausted from working out. But physical activity is critical for keeping up energy levels as exercise gives you endorphins. Working out also boosts circulation and improves cardiovascular health. Active bodies also tend to sleep more soundly as exercise is an excellent stress-management tool and mood elevator.
For mostly sedentary people, getting up every 30 minutes to stretch, walk or perform light exercises can also help reactivate the body and boost blood flow. The more you exercise regularly, the more your energy levels will improve. You will begin to notice that with consistent, moderate exercise, you will better maintain your endurance throughout the day.
Fresh air can do wonders for the mind, body and soul. Research has shown that increased outdoor activity improves concentration and creativity levels. Additionally, being in nature and sunlight has benefits for improved memory and elevated mood, making you less likely to feel the effects of fatigue.
If you’re suffering from an energy drop, spending even five minutes outdoors can help stimulate your circulation and give you the jolt of energy you need to regain focus. Heading outdoors as soon as you feel a wave of fatigue coming on can help reinvigorate your body and wake up your mind.
If you start to feel tired around the same time each day, it could be due to dehydration—one of the most overlooked causes of fatigue and headaches. Because our bodies are mainly comprised of water, dehydration can affect metabolism, leading to that sluggish feeling. As soon as you feel an afternoon slump coming on, choose water instead of coffee and see how your energy improves.
Experts suggest that your body weight divided in half corresponds to the number of ounces of water you should drink per day. Remember that if you exercise often, you also require electrolyte replenishment—these are essential minerals like sodium, potassium and calcium. Drinking coconut water provides a great source of electrolytes and can help you stay energized.
Aromatherapy is the use of essential oil extracts to create a pleasant and therapeutic aroma for stress-management and healing. Essential oils like peppermint, orange and cinnamon are refreshing to the senses, helping to wake you up and make you feel more alert and energized.
You can use aromatherapy as a natural energy booster by adding a few drops of your favorite energy-boosting essential oil or oil blend to a diffuser. Or you can rub essential oils on your wrists or neck and breathe in the stimulating scent.
Stress can have detrimental effects on the body, including chronic pain and fatigue. Chronic stress means that your body is often in fight-or-flight mode, which releases stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline. Being under a lot of pressure can lead to burnout and a lack of motivation, which often results in feeling tired for no obvious reason.
Additionally, people who are overworked and overstressed don’t usually make time for healthy habits, such as diet, exercise and sleep that are required to keep your body operating at peak performance. If you’re feeling exhausted, it’s important to look at the load you’re carrying and lighten it however you can.
Finally, and arguably most importantly, if you’re feeling fatigued each morning and throughout the day, it’s important to look at your sleep habits. In many cases, poor sleep quality is what’s contributing to chronic fatigue and exhaustion. Going to bed at different times each night, getting less than 7 hours of sleep and tossing and turning throughout the night are contributors to poor sleep hygiene.
To improve sleep quality and get natural energy, it’s essential to cultivate better sleep habits. By following a consistent bedtime routine, getting enough hours of sleep and improving your sleep comfort, you can get a deeper sleep and wake up feeling refreshed and energized. There is no better natural energy booster than proper sleep. With better sleep comes greater endurance and higher energy levels that you can sustain.
These natural energy boosters are also long-term solutions for improved overall health. The more care and attention you give your body, the more you will feel energized. Of course, if you suspect you have an underlying medical condition related to chronic fatigue, then it’s important to discuss your concerns with a physician.
Being diligent about your sleep habits is a long-term solution for fighting fatigue and maintaining total body wellness. Relax The Back can help you build the perfect sleep solution. From mattresses to pillows to adjustable bases, we can help you achieve the highest level of comfort designed to support your body. To help improve the quality of your sleep, browse through Relax The Back’s selection of sleep support and wellness products for a better night’s rest.