Are you tired all the time? Feel the urge to take a nap in the middle of the afternoon? Wake up exhausted as if you hadn’t slept a wink? Fatigue is an epidemic, and many of us feel more tired than we do energized. While medical conditions might be to blame, for most people, tiredness can actually be traced back to a combination of seemingly small lifestyle choices. If you want to beat tiredness for good, try these easy remedies:
1. Eat less sodium. Too much salt leads to water retention. It’s an electrolyte, which means it attracts water. When you’re exercising, this is a good thing; the rest of the time, too much salt means (among other health hazards) that water will build up in places it shouldn’t, causing you to feel heavy, bloated, and tired.
2. Exercise more. When you’re tired and all you want to do is nap, the last thing that sounds good is getting up to get moving. But the fact is, studies have shown even just 10 minutes of moderate exercise – a run up the stairs, a quick walk around the block, a short yoga session – dramatically improves your mental state and boosts your energy. One study showed low-intensity exercise lowered feelings of fatigue by 65%!
3. Stop the sugar habit. Many people find themselves reaching for something sugary and sweet when they’re stressed, bored, or tired. While initially it perks you up with a sugar rush, your blood sugar will very quickly come crashing back down leaving you feeling worse than before. Repeat the cycle a few times a day, and it’s no wonder your body is exhausted after that roller coaster!
4. Get more sleep. This sounds simple, but your fatigue problem may really be as simple as getting more sleep. If it sounds impossible to get to bed earlier or wake up later, remember it’s your health you’re guarding, which makes it OK to say no to some things so you can get your 8 hours of beauty sleep in.
5. Drink plenty of water. Mild dehydration can sap your energy and take a toll on your body by thickening your blood, causing your heart to work harder. More water lessens the strain on your heart, while also allowing nutrients to flow through your body more easily. Before reaching for coffee, try drinking a tall glass of water first.
6. Eat more often. Instead of three big meals a day, try three smaller meals combined with several small healthy snacks. Keeping your blood sugar levels more even throughout the day can help you feel more energized by fueling your brain. However, this isn’t license to eat too much! Eating more often means eating less each time you eat.
7. Eat fresh food. Healthy ratios of carbohydrates, lean proteins, and healthy fats are what will energize you for the day. Too much processed food will drain your energy.
8. Deal with stress. Many of us lead busy, stressful lives – and most of our responsibilities aren’t going anywhere. What we can change is how we deal with that stress. Instead of eating wrong or internalizing it, find ways to manage stress in healthier ways. Yoga, meditation, exercise, and creative outlets are all excellent solutions. Find the one that works for you!
9. Take your vitamins. Deficiency of important nutrients can effect your body more than you might realize. Start taking a good multivitamin to boost your body’s overall nutrition. A few nutrients that might be particularly effective at upping your energy levels are omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, B12, vitamin A, and vitamin C. Tiredness and fatigue are all-too-common problems, but a few simple changes can make all the difference. What are your favorite fatigue-fighting remedies? How do you keep tiredness at bay? We’d love to hear from you in the comments!