Between work, meetings, cleaning, working out, and trying to have a life it is natural to feel worn out from time to time. But instead of just reaching for another coffee, which can have some nasty side effects, some drinks can naturally perk you up. It is very normal for energy levels to go up and down throughout the day. Multiple factors can affect this; sleep, stress, level of physical activity, the foods you eat and importantly what you drink. Generally having a sip of something can refuel your tank, helping you feel more energetic. This is particularly true of water. However, some drinks may actually zap your energy and result in you feeling more sluggish than before. Below are the key things to be looking out for next time you need a boost in liquid form.
It seems intuitive to think that having a little sugary treat when we are feeling sluggish might pick us up. But in fact this is not true. Sugar consumption does not lead to any improvement in mood or alertness. Added to this many sugar sweetened drinks have zero nutritional value. This combination of high sugar and low nutritional value can spike blood sugar and insulin levels, leading to a rise in energy, followed by a large crash. We have all herd about flattening the curve and this could not be more relevant when it comes to sugar consumption and energy levels. Sugar sweetened drinks will give you a brief initial high but leave you feeling even more sluggish later on. If you are looking for a drink with a zingy taste but no sugar then look out for natural sweeteners or stick with water.
Look Out For B Vitamins
Particularly B12. Along with the whole family of B vitamins, B12 helps transform the food you eat into energy for your cells. It also keeps your body’s nerves and blood cells healthy and helps prevent a type of anaemia that can make you weak and tired. Going back to the curve analogy B vitamins help to flatten the energy curve naturally metabolising energy from your diet to give a smooth release throughout your day. Not only does this prevent the spike and crash of sugary drinks but also helps your body burn extra calories naturally. Get energy and loose weight!
Say No To Caffeine
We all know the feeling, its mid-morning you’ve still got 2 hours until lunch but you just feel shattered…”I know a coffee will fix this”. Technically coffee will work as it contains caffeine which is a stimulant and will make the body feel alert and awake. But because it is a stimulant caffeine should be consumed in moderation. Too much coffee may lead to energy loss as the body withdraws from the caffeine.
More important to avoiding coffee is avoiding drinks with added caffeine. The average coffee has 40mg per cup meaning that we should not exceed 4 cups a day. But energy drinks can have two to three times as much caffeine. This amount will result in an initial burst of energy from the stimulant but will quickly ware off. As the body withdraws from the caffeine the body will begin to feel more tired and lethargic than before.
Look Out For Vitamin D
I bet your thinking what vitamin D? Isn’t that related to strong bones and teeth? Well you would be right but more and more research is showing that vitamin D has many functions within the body. Some are even suggesting it gets re-classed as a hormone due to the variety of roles it plays within the body. Vitamin D plays a key role in the immune system, calcium, magnesium and phosphate absorption but also appears to influence fatigue and energy levels.
A recent study from Newcastle university has taken this claim from speculation to science. Showing how individuals with low vitamin D levels had inefficient mitochondrial function. But what does that mean? Mitochondria are essential for manufacturing ATP, an energy rich molecule from glucose and oxygen, in the body. ATP acts as the main energy source for your cells and interestingly inefficient mitochondrial function is linked to fatigue and low levels of energy. While drinks with vitamin D in will not give you an instant energy boost if you are someone who often feels fatigued and just cannot generate energy you may be lacking in this vital nutrient.
It may sound so simple but proper hydration can have a large influence on our mood and energy levels. Our bodies are around 60% water every cell of us needs water to function properly. Proper hydration can help with weight loss, physical performance and relieve headaches. But importantly hydration has a major effect on energy levels and brain function. Your brain is strongly affected by dehydration with studies showing that even mild dehydration will impair brain function making you feel tired and lethargic. Although most people think of dehydration as an extreme situation and it can be, it can happen very easily, partial dehydration may occur if a person goes all morning without water. Maintaining energy could be as simple as carrying a water bottle around and sipping it throughout the day to stay properly hydrated. Drinking enough water can sometimes feel like a chore but with Vit Stix you can simply add flavour and vitamins (including B12) to your water anywhere, anytime.
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