Libby Limon BSc NT mBANT / 11 Mar 2015
Most of my clients, even those with seemingly healthy diets and lifestyles, often complain of experiencing some fatigue or energy dips throughout the day. Here is my checklist of areas to address if you want to improve focus, productivity and energy levels through the day.
Our energy comes from the food that we eat. The most available source is from carbohydrates, however, we have to have those carbohydrates released into the bloodstream at a rate that the body can use them. Otherwise, we can experience blood sugar highs and lows, stimulating insulin and cortisol production. This makes us feel super alert at first but then crash an hour or two later.
Top tip: try adding healthy fats, proteins, and fibre for slow-release energy.
These contain caffeine which also affects blood sugar balance. It can stimulate a rise in blood sugar giving you a short, sharp, pick-me-up burst of energy - but what goes up must come down. Often, a crash in energy will make you reach for another coffee and so the blood sugar rollercoaster continues.
Working out is great for you and your energy levels, improving fitness, helping your body more efficiently balance blood sugar and producing feel-good endorphins.
Top tip: try to do your cardio in the morning and calming activity such as yoga or pilates in your evening workouts.
If you want to be energised, it is important to give your body time to rest and recover. 7-8 hours is optimum, any less than this has been shown to damage your short- and long-term health.
A simple 10 minute 2:4 breathing exercise (breath in for a count of 2, breath out for a count of 4) can have an incredible effect on calming the nervous system and relaxing the body. Digital detox an hour before bed, turning off from work and social stimuli but also the light from the screens themselves.
Top tip: find time to relax and chill out. Remember, it all adds up.
We consume food and breathe in oxygen to create the energy that we need but the body needs to change those raw materials into something called ATP, before we can use it.
The ATP reaction requires a complex chain of reactions which need B vitamins and co-factors such as Co-enzyme Q10. We produce CoQ10 in our bodies, but levels start to decline with age.
Top tip: take a supplement to restore your levels.