We have heard a lot about “winter blues” but many of us actually feel really down in the summer. Extended periods of heat and humidity, bright sunshine, warm nights with no rain can add up to the trouble.
We find ourselves searching for a cool place to sit down while everyone else is engaged in physical activities. We feel extra fatigued during time. If you notice your energy is slipping, you may try and incorporate the following tips into your daily routine to help you get through the week.
Boosting Energy Through Diet
Start the day off right with a healthful breakfast. Ever hear the saying “Eat like a king in the morning, a prince at noon, and a pauper at night?” It is a saying for a reason. Neglecting your breakfast, or eating a breakfast full of empty calories, is a sure way to crash in the middle of the day. A healthy breakfast will help jump start your metabolism and keep it firing the rest of the day.
Try and include more protein. Protein is hard to digest and thus absorbed slower, causing less of a spike and crash in blood sugar and more long-term energy. Try a hard-boiled egg in the morning for a convenient boost.
Eat whole grains. Eating whole grains helps with increasing your body’s sensitivity to insulin which will help you have more energy throughout the day.
Eat smaller portions. Ironically enough, the more food in your body the more tired you will feel. Digesting food is one of the most strenuous processes on the body, so a balanced meal three times a day will give you the most energy.
Stay hydrated with water. Drinking water and constantly keeping your body refreshed will help nourish your body and give you long lasting energy. One of the quickest ways people tire out is from dehyrdation. Drinking 6-8 glasses of water a day will keep you hydrated and energetic.
Stay away from sodas or other sugar-laden drinks. Studies show that crashing and feeling tired is common after the body processes the large amount of sugars in soda drinks.
Resist the urge to midnight snack. Eating just before bed causes strain on your body as it digests the food and has you feeling more tired as a result the next day.
Increase daily intake of magnesium. To have high energy levels, 300 miligrams of magnesium daily is needed. Eating fish or bran cereal increases your magnesium intake which in turn, increases your energy levels. Almonds and nuts also carry magnesium.
Boosting Energy Through Lifestyle Changes
Stretch. Even if you are tied to your desk and cubicle, doing a couple of stretches during a 3 to 5 minute break is enough to give you a boost of energy.
Exercise daily. Exercising daily will not only give you endorphins which will increase your happiness levels, but it will also get your blood pumping and will provide you with a much needed energy boost. Cardio exercises like jogging and running are the best ways to boost energy levels.
Listen to some invigorating music. Turning the music up, especially if that music is something that makes you want to dance or move your body, is a good way of boosting your energy. Listen to music for a good 10 minutes.
Talk to someone. Subjects who have social interactions in the office are less tired than those who are quiet in the office. If you want to banish your sleepiness and boost your energy level, go down to the proverbial water cooler and chat it up.
Take a cold shower. If you are at home in the middle of the day and find your energy levels dangerously low, consider taking a cold shower. A 3-minute cold shower might be enough to combat chronic sleepiness during the day.
Take a power nap. Naps might seem counterproductive, but studies have proven that a 60 minute power nap has the ability to reduce stress, increase energy levels and even help retain memory retrieval.
Relax. Make sure you are taking time to relax and get away if possible, even if it is just for the day or a weekend. Schedule 1-2 nights per week ‘off’, when you don’t have any social obligations and can set the household duties aside for one more day. Practice some deep breathing if you are feeling overwhelmed.
Massage your toes. Summer’s stifling heat can disrupt your central nervous system’s ability to maintain adequate blood flow to your brain and muscles leading to a dull but persistent feeling of sluggishness. To correct that energy drain fast, try firmly massaging the soles of your feet and the webbed areas between your toes. Studies show that these tickly spots contain clusters of nerves – called acupressure points – that message to your blood vessels whenever you press on them, relaxing and dilating your arteries and improving the flow of energizing blood to your brain and muscles.
Foods to Boost Your Energy in Summer
Food is energy. Every bite of food that we take is converted into a symphony of chemical substances that can either serve us by promoting and supporting our well-being, or work against us by promoting inflammation and, ultimately, disease. Here are some of the best fruits and veggies, in the order of color, to pick up at your local farmers market or grocery store to boost your energy and keep you healthy and vibrant.
- Red: Pomegranates, cherries, bell peppers, tomatoes, strawberries, raspberries, radishes.
- Orange: Tangerines, oranges, mango, papaya, cantaloupe, carrots.
- Yellow: Banana, pineapple, lemon, corn.
- Green: Asparagus, avocado, cucumbers, celery, greens, broccoli, cabbage, limes.
- Blue/Purple: Blackberries, blueberries, purple cauliflower, figs, grapes, cabbage.
- White: Onions, garlic, shallots, jicama.
Convert the odds of summer into an enjoyable active time by eating right, working out a little, and relaxing yourself. EHC wishes you a wonderful summer time.