4 Simple Ways to Boost your Energy - Jackie Lynch
4 Simple Ways to Boost Your Energy -- by Nutritional Therapist, Jackie Lynch
Have you lost your Va Va Voom? Do you feel tired all the time? In my nutrition clinic, I constantly hear people blaming their age for their lack of energy. But whether you’re 29 or 79, it’s far more likely that diet and lifestyle are the main culprits, so here are a few simple changes you can make which might make a world of difference to how you feel.
– Maximise magnesium if you feel that everything is starting to spiral out of control and you’re only just clinging on by your fingertips, then an Epsom salts (magnesium sulphate) bath could be just what you need. Not only does magnesium kick-start the energy production process in the body, it also helps to calm the nervous system and relieve muscle tension. After a busy and stressful day, 2-3 handfuls of salts in the bath could make you feel like a whole new woman. Eating plenty of leafy greens like spinach, watercress and kale and wholegrain foods like brown rice is another good way to keep magnesium levels topped up, so try to factor them into your diet every day.
– Boost the B’s – B vitamins act as vital links in the chain reaction of energy production, so if you’re running low you’ll find it hard to keep going. They’re in lots of different foods, so it should be easy enough to have all the B vitamins you need by eating a balanced diet, but if you’re skipping meals or grabbing food on the go, then that won’t help your cause. The more different types of food you’re eating, the more you’re likely to be getting the B’s that you need – so try to mix it up a bit if you’re in the habit of eating the same breakfast or lunch every day. Opting for a tuna salad sandwich instead of a tuna mayo sandwich at lunchtime is one quick and easy way to broaden your intake of different nutrients. B vitamins are depleted by alcohol and stress, so you could be burning through the B’s at the very time you need them most. A B complex supplement might be a good move to help you keep on top of things if you’re having a busy or stressful time of it.
– Power through with protein – if you’re prone to energy dips and sugar cravings during the day or generally feel a lack of stamina then you may not be eating enough protein. Protein is all about growth and repair of cells (really important if you’re recovering from illness or injury), but it also helps to balance your blood sugar. Make sure you’re eating protein with every meal and snack – it will keep you going for longer, so that you’re not prone to energy dips or cravings for a quick sugar fix. Protein-rich foods include meat, fish, eggs, quinoa, nuts, seeds and pulses. Adding protein to cereal in the form of chopped nuts or a tablespoon of pumpkin seeds is one way to boost your breakfast. At lunch and dinner, protein should be about ¼ of the overall meal – roughly a fist-sized portion, such as a chicken breast, salmon steak or good dollop of houmous. It will make a world of difference to your energy levels throughout the day.
– Vitamin D for vitality – by February, most of the UK population is deficient in vitamin D, because the stores that our body has built up from the summer sunshine have run out. While vitamin D is crucial for bone health, because our body can’t absorb calcium without it, it also plays a key role in physical and mental energy. If you regularly struggle with lethargy and low mood or tired, aching back and limbs, especially over the winter months, a deficiency in vitamin D could be a factor. There’s also an association between Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and low levels of vitamin D. Even if this isn’t an issue for you, Public Health England now recommend that everyone should be taking vitamin D over the winter months.
Jackie Lynch is a Registered Nutritional Therapist and her book, Va Va Voom: the 10-Day Energy Diet (Headline £14.99) is out now: http://amzn.to/2ED8XZx. Find out more about her nutrition clinic at www.well-well-well.co.uk or follow her on social media at @WellWellWellUK.