Feeling tired, but sick of relying on coffee? Luckily for you, there are ways to improve your energy levels through your diet- and were breaking them down here!
Keep reading for 4 quick tips to improve energy levels, just by changing your diet!
o1- DRINK YOUR WATER
We know, we know- water is just about the least interesting beverage out there. But it is essential to our health- after all, the human body is made of ~60% water!
Water is responsible for many bodily functions, from the way oxygen travels to our cells, to the way we digest and absorb nutrients, to our baseline body temperature (1). Therefore, without proper water intake, the body will struggle to perform daily functions.
As a result, poor hydration can impact our mood, alertness, and energy levels (2). Without proper water intake, there may be a reduced amount of oxygen traveling to our brain and muscle cells each day, which can make us feel tired.
So next time you wake up feeling tired, try grabbing a tall glass of water before reaching for the morning coffee!
For more tips, see our other post: How to Hydrate Like A Pro.
02- EAT MORE FIBER
Fiber is an essential part of a health diet, and is found in many fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes and seeds. It is well known that fiber may help improve cardiovascular health and assist with weight management. But did you know that eating adequate fiber may also help you feel energized throughout the day ?
One of the most important aspects of fiber is that it is a slow digested food. When fiber is consumed with other carbohydrates, it may help regulate the rate at which sugar enters the blood stream; in other words, it can help prevent spikes in blood sugar. When blood sugar is well regulated throughout the day, we can avoid feeling those dreaded “sugar crashes” which can make us feel tired throughout the day.
Therefore, if you’re looking to increase energy levels throughout the day, gradually increase your fiber intake by 1 to 2 grams per day until you reach the current recommended RDA: 25 g/day for women and 38 g/day for men!
In addition to fiber, you should also be sure to include enough carbohydrate in your diet, as this is our main source of quick energy- especially if you’re exercising!
03- DON’T SHY AWAY FROM FAT
Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs) are two fats that may help energize us. Although research is limited, studies suggest that MCTs may improve energy levels, particularly during exercise (3). However, research on omega-3 fats is more conclusive.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids are essential fats. This means they are not produced in the body, and must be consumed through the diet. Omega-3 Fatty Acids are also known to have anti-inflammatory effects, which may indirectly impact energy. Research suggests those living with chronic inflammatory disease may experience increased feelings of fatigue, (4) which leads us to believe inflammation may be linked with reduced energy levels.
What is more, the CDC estimates that 60% of Americans are living with chronic disease (5). When we put all of this information together, it appears as though managing chronic inflammation, a prevalent issue in America, may also help to increase energy levels.
Therefore, if you’re feeling tired, try adding some more fatty fish to your diet! If you don’t eat fish, check out our Ultimate Guide To Supplements for tips on choosing a good fish oil supplement.In addition to increasing energy levels and decreasing inflammation, omega-3 fats can provide many other health benefits. If you’re interested in learning more, check out our Guide to Healthy Fats.
04- EAT THROUGHOUT THE DAY
Most people eat food because they like the way it tastes. This is great, because its important to enjoy food. However, its also important to remember that food is our primary source of energy.
Without food, our body will not have enough energy to perform the daily functions required to sustain life. The brain, in particular, requires significant amounts of glucose to function efficiently (6).
So what does all of this mean? Well, the bottom line is if we are not providing our bodies with enough food, we may feel tired. One way to avoid feeling tired throughout the day is to supply our bodies with a somewhat constant source of energy- and make sure we are eating enough calories throughout the day!
Therefore, if you often feel tired throughout the day, try breaking up your meals into smaller portions, consumed more frequently throughout the day!
LOOKING FOR MORE WAYS TO BOOST ENERGY?
The tips provided here are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to increasing energy levels!
Energy levels throughout the day are also impacted by the quality of sleep we get each night, our exercise routines, and how we manage stress. If you’d like to read more about any of these topics, see our blog posts below: