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Forget "Monster Drinks": Get the Energy You Need the Natural Way!
Everyday people tell me how they need to drink an energy drink just to make it through the day. My personal goal for this article is to help you understand how to naturally, effectively, and enjoyably maximize your energy levels!
[DrCorinneWeaver.com] To start off, I would love for you – in your mind — to answer the following questions: (Photo Credit: Dr. Corinne Weaver)
- On a scale from 1-10 (where 10 is optimal), how would you rate your current energy levels?
- Why did you give this rating?
- Why do you think this is?
There are ENDLESS benefits to maximizing your energy levels and the potential just continues to grow the more energy you have!
Some of the more obvious ones include:
- Maximized focus and productivity for work-related pursuits
- More time to spend with family and friends
- Higher levels of physical fitness
- Heightened mental clarity and cognitive functioning
- More time for hobbies and cultivation of artistic or creative pursuits
What you do with more energy is really a matter of personal preference. When you start to maximize your energy levels with these all-natural habits and methods, then it's up to YOU what you do with your time. That's what makes it so exciting!
One of the most obvious ways to increase your energy levels is by improving your nutrition.
In terms of the kinds of food which will provide your body with the most energy- boosting nutrients, those with a low-glycemic level are ultimately the best options. (Photo Credit: Flickr)
Foods like beans, brown rice, quinoa, avocados, and nuts have less impact on your blood sugar than foods with a high glycemic load (like white rice, spaghetti, potatoes, corn flakes, and sugary juices and soft drinks.) Even though we've been taught to associate these starchy foods with energy-providing principles, the long-term effects of consuming this kind of food has negative impacts on your energy levels.
The main issue with these foods is that the carbohydrates they provide are refined carbs which can play havoc on blood sugar levels. While they'll boost your energy short-term, they are definitely not a good long-term solution.
As metabolism is the force which converts the nutrients in our food to energy, it follows that foods good for your metabolism will also provide you with a higher level of energy. Aiming to increase your metabolism is a great way to shift the focus from consuming 'high-energy' foods which can so soften be misleading in their nutritional worth.
Optimal metabolism requires an abundance of vitamins and minerals which provide our cells with the proper fuel required to release energy. When the nutrients in our food aren't enough, the cells are low in energy-releasing activity which results in tiredness and fatigue.
Eating predominantly nutrient-dense foods like superfoods (berries, nuts, grapefruit, cinnamon, real chocolate like I discussed last week) has been proven to increase energy levels and provide more nutritional value than foods which may contain less nutrients than it may initially appear.
The RIGHT kind of physical exercise is important.
Increasing physical movement and exercise is also a necessary factor in order to increase metabolism, and the combined effect of both nutrient-dense foods and exercise is an increase and abundance of health and energy. (Photo Credit: Pixabay)
Increasing fitness levels is another key way to encourage overall energy levels, and although it seems counter-intuitive, the endorphins from an intense workout and shot of energy received after a period of activity function as a way to increase overall energy.
It's important, however, to engage in the right kind and intensity of fitness activity to encourage energy levels.
Breathing exercises (see link below) are more effective at sustaining energy release throughout the day and avoid the danger of burnout or slipping into fatigue. These include exercises such as spinal stretching and strengthening. https://www.mybodysite.com/dr-corinne/physical-breathing
Increasing fitness levels also encourages deeper, more regulated sleep patterns, better heart health, and sharper focus.
Don't forget your mental health. It's a crucial factor for your energy levels.
Your mental health has a direct effect on your energy levels - just as the physical health does. When we consider the mental energy that's expended during periods of intense anxiety or depression, or even just a day of being very worried, this becomes evident and so it's important to maintain awareness of this as we aim to increase overall energy.
Becoming aware of where our energy is going is key to mastering it and cultivating more, and this is where things such as deep breathing and praying come in handy. It may seem simple, but being able to recognize where and how our thoughts affect our physical energy is SO important if we're going to learn how to let it go into cultivating more positive relationships and connections around us.
Vitamins and Minerals
Increasing your magnesium and vitamin D intake can also boost both mood and energy levels, and so consuming foods such as bananas, cashews, almonds, dark chocolate, leafy greens and seeds is recommended!
The irony surrounding the fact that stimulants such as caffeine, alcohol, and 'energy- boosting' drinks is that they are actually more damaging to our health than helpful. In fact, I knew a patient who was drinking monster drinks daily who very quickly became a diabetic.
There are a number of useful natural stimulants that have similar energy-boosting effects to the likes of caffeine but with none of the guilt. These include:
- Ginseng Guarana
- B Vitamins
- Coconut Oil
By increasing blood-oxygen levels, reducing blood sugars, cognitive function, and encouraging metabolism, these natural stimulants provide a wide variety of benefits that results in an overall increase in energy levels.
It's a relatively simple recommendation, and yet so many of us neglect to fuel our bodies correctly to optimize the oxygen production in cells which is where energy is created.
The importance of water.
We can become drained and fatigued if our bodies haven't consumed enough water. Besides providing an energy boost and fighting off fatigue, drinking water also produces many other benefits such as warding off headaches, increasing metabolism, helping with weight loss, and aiding in clearer skin. In this way, many physical symptoms of low energy levels are all intertwined, and so increasing water intake can often be the most basic first step towards increasing energy.
Dehydration is a massive issue which causes low levels of energy and general fatigue. With less water in your system, your blood volume decreases (meaning your heart has to work harder to pump it around!). Your blood vessels also constrict, so don't be surprised when dehydration headaches strike. All of this extra energy loss can be avoided simply by increasing the amount of water we drink! You can refer to my last article about water for more details on brain shrinkage.
In terms of getting energy from non-food related sources, drink or exercise, there has been a recent surge in understanding of how activities and engagement with our environment can also affect energy levels.
Regularly doing activities we love and feel strongly about not only increases levels of happiness and contentment, but also helps to physically produce more energy. I like to think of it more as increasing our 'vitality' - the passion for engaging with people and activities that help us to shine and become the most positive version of ourselves in a given moment.
By being honest with ourselves and open to exploring passions, talents and hobbies and making time for them in the bustle of everyday life, we are automatically injecting a little bit more happiness into our day!
What is it that you love to do? Notice how much more energized you feel next time you engage with this activity, and then the next step is simple - DO MORE OF IT!
What time you get up in the morning can make a difference.
Getting up earlier has been proven to give us that extra boost of energy and positivity we need to get the most out of the day.
By getting our bodies moving and engaging in light to moderate exercise in the early hours, we are kick-starting your metabolism, productivity, and energy levels to ensure a more sustained release of the energy gained during the night.
Waking up earlier means:
- More time to exercise
- A better diet
- Increased productivity
- Reduced levels of stress
The time spent on these activities in the morning is a crucial time for self-reflection and giving ourselves the opportunity to tune in with how we're feeling before starting into the day's work.
Reduce the time you spend "plugged in"
A notable change comes over us when we reduce the amount of time we spend 'plugged in' to our devices. Not only do we become more 'present,' but we become more alert which can also contribute to improved fitness levels.
Although it may initially seem that removing ourselves from technology literally gives us more energy, when you break it down it really just means that all the energy that would previously have gone on mental analytics and online scrolling is now free to be used elsewhere.
Understanding your energy usage can be likened to understanding exactly where your electricity energy is going - there are many outlets, most of which we have minimal awareness of.
Screen time is one of these. Too much screen time has also been proven to lower the levels of cortisol in the brain which helps the body to balance out stressful situations. When we lack cortisol, we lack the ability to process experiences and problems as well as we normally could.
My favorite essential oil mixture is my Revive and Relax. Using these will help your body wake up and wind down at night. You can enjoy the power of these today. Click here to find out more.
Revive has lemongrass which acts as a stress reducer, orange which is uplifting, pine which energizes, nutmeg which helps boost adrenal energy, and black pepper which increases circulation.
Relax has chamomile which is a calming agent, frankincense which helps reduce stress, sandalwood which is very relaxing, lavender which helps ease tension, orange which can calm the nerves, and juniper berry which helps the racing mind.
The power of the sun.
Did you know that the sun has a direct effect on our energy levels? It's easy to feel lighter, brighter, and more energized when the sun is out, and as Vitamin D is quite a rare nutrient to find in foods, the sun is the most important source of vitamin D that we can get naturally. Vitamin D has a direct relationship with our energy levels. When we are lacking in vitamin D, we are more likely to experience fatigue and low levels of energy. As the sun is the most important and potent source of this vitamin, it's easy to see how spending time in the sun is a more effective way of boosting our energy than trying to increase supplements or intake of it.
Beware of "energy" supplements
It's common for the supplements available for boosting energy levels to be unknown combinations of ingredients and unnatural products that we don't question purely because it helps us to achieve our goal - they boost our energy. But most products marketed as 'energy boosters' actually contain more harmful substances than beneficial ones, and so the best advice for those seeking to boost their energy levels naturally would be to steer clear of them completely.
Despite being labelled 'natural', over 90 percent of vitamin supplements are synthetic and new evidence is emerging that these unnatural forms of vitamins could do more harm than good. According to the Organic Consumers Association in the USA, man-made vitamins cannot be used by the body in the same way as their natural versions.
Herbal energy supplements (such as the ones listed below) are much more efficient at relieving symptoms of fatigue and don't present any risks or dangers of negative side-effects while they do so. They're also 100% natural!
There are many controversial aspects to the energetic effects of taking B Vitamins as they actually function as catalysts to the food energy we take in.
Only food provides "energy" in the form of calories, carbs, fat, and protein. B vitamins help convert dietary energy into ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate, the form of energy that your body uses) in a series of complex chemical reactions carried out by the mitochondria in cells.
B12 is just one of the members of the B-vitamin family, but it's one of the most important to your body. You can get a good amount of this vitamin if you eat lean animal meat or take a daily multivitamin. (However you do it, be sure you're getting the daily recommended value and a Methyl brand). B12 is vital for healthy red blood cell formation, neurological function, proper energy creation, and so much more.
Breaking it down into manageable daily tasks
If all of this information is seeming like a lot to take in, it can help sometimes to break it down into small, manageable daily tasks. You can take these tips one by one to incorporate them into your life. The natural supplements can all be taken simply with hot water, tea, or any meals, making them an easy way to encourage your energy levels.
Physical Activity: By increasing levels of physical activity in small ways (such as walking to work or somewhere you would normally drive), you will experience an elevated level of energy and motivation. Scott, my husband, always parks far away from any store not just for exercising but to protect his car.
Simply becoming more aware of our energy levels at various points during the day can help us implement strategies to combat times of low energy. For instance, some people notice energy lags in the morning, while others experience it more so in the evening.
When do you find your energy lacks the most?
Maximizing your energy levels is a great way to start helping you achieve your goals. By increasing the amount of energy we have to spend, it stands to reason that there is more surplus energy to be spent in areas you wish to either improve or enhance your life.
What goals do you think you could achieve if you could increase your energy levels? (Not just physical energy levels, but mental, too!)
By regulating and understanding our energy levels we can ensure that goals are not only met, but built upon.
In the end, it all comes down to …
In the end, it all comes down to balance. Finding the right balance between work, diet, physical, creative, and enjoyable activities is the key to enabling you to unlock your potential and helping you manifest more energy into your life. It can be a slow experience to start with, but experimenting with these things and finding out exactly what works for your body, mind, and lifestyle is the best way to find what works for YOU to optimize your energy.
Activities which can help with finding things balance are things like deep breathing, taking some time for yourself, journaling, or anything else you feel helps you to connect with YOU!
What do you do to reset?
Also, if you feel like you need support on this journey, I am more than happy to help.
And finally, remember this quote! "The higher your energy levels, the more efficient your body. The more efficient your body, the better you feel, and the better you feel the more you will use your talent to produce outstanding results" - Tony Robbins
I hope my column speaks to you and you can wake up each morning with a purpose and full of energy. What I do every day is a calling, and I give God the glory for allowing His gifts to work through me. I do believe in miracles, because I get to see them every day! If you would like to contact me with your health concerns email me directly at Dr@drcorinneweaver.com. For more information you can go to www.DrCorinneWeaver.com or sign up for my closed Facebook group #NoMoreMeds-Community for more healthy tips https://m.facebook.com/groups/1845828392308723.
Dr. Corinne Weaver
Dr. Corinne Weaver is a compassionate upper cervical chiropractor, educator, motivational speaker, mother of three, and internationally bestselling author. In 2004, she founded the Upper Cervical Wellness Center in Indian Trail, North Carolina. Over the last 13 years, she has helped thousands of clients restore their brain to-body function. When she was 10 years old, she lost her own health as the result of a bike accident that led to having asthma and allergy issues that she thought she would always have to endure. Then, after her first upper cervical adjustment at age 21, her health began to improve thanks to upper cervical care and natural herbal remedies. This enabled her to create a drug-free wellness lifestyle for herself and her family, and she also enthusiastically discovered her calling to help children heal naturally.
Dr. Weaver was recently named one of Charlotte Magazine's "Top Doctors" in 2016 and is now a number-one internationally bestselling author to two books: Learning How to Breathe and No More Meds.
Upper Cervical Wellness Center is known for finding the root cause of health concerns through lifestyle changes, diagnostic testing, nutraceutical supplementation, and correction of subluxation (as opposed to just medicating the symptoms). The practice offers cutting-edge technological care at its state-of-the-art facility, including laser-aligned upper cervical X-rays, bioimpedance analysis (measures body composition), digital thermography (locates thermal abnormalities characterized by skin inflammation), and complete nutritional blood analysis, which is focused on disease prevention.