Persistent mild fatigue or a chronic lack of energy due to day-to-day stressors or hectic schedules can be addressed with simple preventive steps. Try the suggestions below:
- Get enough rest. Quality sleep and rest encourage optimum energy levels. Retiring one hour earlier will yield huge dividends in your overall productivity. Try different amounts of sleep and see what works best.
- Get regular exercise. Physical activity brings oxygen to the brain, resulting in a revitalized feeling. Aim for 45 minutes of some form of moderate exercise most days of the week.
- Catch some sun. Expose yourself to natural sunlight every day. UV rays affect the production of melatonin, a hormone that controls the sleep cycle.
- Try the Stimulating Breath. Energize the mind and body with the Stimulating Breath: Sit with your back straight and place the tip of the tongue against the ridge of tissue just behind the upper front teeth, and keep it there through the entire exercise. Rapidly breathe in and out through the nose for 10 seconds.
- Cultivate a positive nature. Harboring anger, resentment, guilt and fear can deplete energy.
- Eat a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables (preferably organic) for their protective phytochemicals and micronutrients needed for optimal metabolism.
- Become a grazer. A large meal can trigger the body to release more insulin, resulting in low blood sugar levels and a fatigue-inducing slump. Smaller meals or healthy snacks throughout the day can help keep blood sugar levels steady.
- Stay hydrated. Dehydration is a common cause of fatigue – drink purified water or other healthy liquids throughout the day.
- Snack right. Choose healthy snacks that contain some protein, carbohydrates, and beneficial fats or select whole foods that are low in fat. Good options include a handful of unsalted nuts, fresh or dried fruit, yogurt, vegetable sticks, and whole grain bread or crackers.
- Eat more fiber. Navy beans, kidney beans, chickpeas, and lentils are all rich in fiber, which slows the release of insulin and helps maintain a steady supply of energy.
- Magnesium and calcium. Oral magnesium supplementation has been shown to help reduce symptoms of fatigue, especially for those with low magnesium levels.
- Coenzyme Q10. This vital nutrient is involved in cellular energy production throughout the body.
- Cordyceps. A traditional Chinese medicinal fungus that may help fight fatigue and boost energy levels. It is used as an energizing tonic and to help increase aerobic capacity and endurance.
- D-Ribose. A five-carbon sugar used in the generation of ATP (adenosine triphosphate), it helps maintain energy production in cells and can be especially beneficial for those with chronic fatigue.
- Ginseng (American or Asian). Asian ginseng (Panax ginseng) and American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) are used for stimulant and adaptogenic (stress-protective) properties, respectively.
- Eleuthero (Eleutherococcus senticosus). A woody shrub from northeastern Asia with properties similar to those of ginseng, it has a long history of use to maximize athletic performance. Studies show that eleuthero can help enhance mental activity as well.
- Arctic root (Rhodiola rosea). An adaptogenic herb that helps prevent fatigue, stress and the damaging effects of oxygen deprivation.
- Vitamin B complex. B-vitamins act as cofactors in many metabolic reactions and assist in the metabolism of carbohydrates into energy.