Inspiring you to make healthy food and choices one step at a time

April 27, 2010

Got Energy?

Do you need more energy? Like our cat, do you feel like you want to take naps during the day? Do you need a caffeine fix in the morning or afternoon just to make it through the day? Do you feel like you can't exercise because of a lack of energy? Let's look at a very short list of why there could be a deficit and go over a very basic plan to increase your energy...

1. Lack of sleep
2. Poor eating plan
3. Lack of exercise

These three are the most common reasons the average person has a lack of energy. Let's briefly look at each and explore possible remedies.

1. A lack of sleep is usually remedied by getting on a regular sleep schedule, eliminating caffeine in the afternoon and evening, and increasing your energy expenditure during the day. Here are some other common and uncommon helps from

- Following the same routine every night
- Apply hot packs to the spine and have a hot footbath before going to bed.  (ooh, that sounds good!)
- Take a ripe banana and mash it. Add roasted cumin seeds to it and mix properly. Consume this mashed mix before going to sleep. (a healthy substitute for the midnight snacker)
- Increase in the consumption of vitamin B foods such as whole grains and nuts. (Which leads to our next culprit of energy...)

2. A poor eating plan can certainly deprive your body of nutrients that supply constant energy throughout the day. We need to eat properly balanced calories. What do I mean by that? We want nutrient dense food, not empty calories. Afternoon snacks are the biggest culprit. What constitutes empty calories that perhaps we think give us energy to keep us going the rest of the day but actually zap us? 

caffeinated soft drinks (diet or not)

candy bars/pastries

granola bars with sugar/corn syrup (supposed to be healthy, right?)

energy drinks such as Monster, Red Bull (look here for adverse affects)

specialty coffee drinks/black teas (I know these are delicious, but have you actually looked at the calories and sugar levels these contain? (Look at carbs with zero fiber) Look up your favorite drink here)

regular coffee? Adrenal fatigue can be caused by too much caffeine.

little 5 hour bottles of caffeine (must we go there?)

chips, pretzels, chocolate, vending machine goodies

All of these are empty calories that will give you a short term boost that leave you holding the bag on energy for the rest of the day.

What snacks are good for afternoon?

Veggies or Fruit with a protein to balance blood sugar levels

Carrots, celery sticks, and apples along with nuts (almonds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, or peanut butter or almond butter) The fruit helps alleviate the sweet tooth some of us get in the PM and the crunch psychologically wakes us up.

Good energy bars (fruit-sweetened)

Yogurt Smoothie (with protein or veggie powder balancing sugar levels)

Hummus and organic chips (Archer Farms organic corn chip, Garden of Eatin)

Trail Mix (basically dried fruits and nuts, or combo of nuts, no fruit) (no MM's please)

Veggies with yogurt dip

These are just to name a few. Experiment to see what you like best. Actually, sometimes it's a matter of what you can tolerate best in the beginning of your healthy eating plan. We can be honest, right? It's hard to compare a Dark Cherry Mocha Coffee Latte with a celery stick, apple and almonds... I completely understand. But remember, it's all a matter of habit and what you get used to. Examine and Exchange those unhealthy empty calories that take your money and leave you with nothing, lack of energy most of all, feeling bad and guilty the rest of the day. Fight Back! You're worth it!

3. Lack of exercise is our third reason the average person has no energy. You're probably saying, "What do you mean? I have no energy...How am I supposed to exercise if I don't have energy to begin with??"  It's a vicious cycle, isn't it?  That's exactly what I'm saying...Begin to exercise and you will get more energy. At this point, it's mind over matter.

-Choose a time when you can consistently exercise. Morning, Afternoon, or Evening? Whatever time you choose, guard it. You don't really want to exercise late evening because that could interfere with your sleep. But if you work outside the home, exercise when you get home then fix a quick healthy dinner by using a crockpot, 15-30 minute meals, or leftovers. Planning is Key both in exercise and cooking healthy.

-Choose your exercise. You can walk, swim or go to a gym but I am on a kick right now of Jillian Michael's exercise DVDs. Why? Because (1) they are effective (2) anyone can do them (remember Biggest Loser Winner?) and (3) she motivates many people in a no-nonsense, "just do it" approach without making you feel like you can't. I would recommend these for anyone. Are they easy? NO WAY! But can you work up to it? MOST CERTAINLY! She combines weights (hand weights), with cardio, and stomach exercises (abs). The 30 Day Shred DVD is inexpensive, so are the weights. No excuse, right? Wait, there's only takes 20 minutes. Yep, that's it. Am I getting any compensation for this. NO, I just want to help those who need it.

We live in busy times but you choose what you want to do with the time you have. If you eat the foods close to the original way God made them (not processed) and give your body the exercise and sleep it needs... You will live a happier, more productive and satisfying life. Is that all there is? No, obviously not, but that's a good start over what you can control.

I saw this on today and thought it appropriate.

“Successful people aren’t born that way.  They become successful by establishing the habit of doing things unsuccessful people don’t like to do.  The successful people don’t always like these things themselves; they just get on and do them.”  - author unknown

I think that sums it up...What changes will you make today?

This is linked to:
Tasty Tuesdays
Tempt My Tummy
Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays


Jerri at Simply Sweet Home said...

Great post! Lots of good information!

Also, I have to tell you I am floored by how much your cat looks like ours! I showed my husband the picture, and he thought I was showing him a picture of our cat. lol.

Melanie said...

I honestly have not slept well since last summer.
I get A LOT. I shred, I walk, I run, I bike.
Sabra Classic with sea salted Kirby cucumber spears ~ my fave snack or meal.

Nicole Feliciano said...

Great reminders on non-caffeinated ways to get an energy boost.

Melissa said...

Yeah you are right. Afternoon snacks should be a no no. Most especially if you are serving softdrinks, coffee, or even energy drinks.

Megan said...

Love your all products, keep it up.

Victoria said...

Ohh! I just love cats and this cat is looking so beautiful. Well, I am agree with you A poor eating plan will effect your health.

Lynn said...

I've always want to be full of energy everyday. I enjoy reading your blog such a wonderful and interesting idea.Thank you for posting.

Katie said...

I do really love cat..They are so sweet and cute..I have my happy go lucky cat at home and they really make me happy.

Kayla said...

Very Nice and Informative Article. Thanks for the great share.

Eat To Live said...

I am a new follower. Please stop over to my blog and check out My Journey With Candida.
Thanks Terry

Jillian said...

Great article very informative i love reading these kind of article i learn a lot thanks for sharing very helpful.

Christy said...

Wow, I really like your post, thanx for the share, looking forward for your next post.

Jennifer said...

I enjoy reading your blog such a wonderful and interesting idea.Thank you for posting, looking forward.

Health Questions said...

Good read, thanks for your thoughts.

Brittany said...

I have my happy go lucky cat at home and they really make me happy.

Halloween Sid said...

Good points about exercise and eating. I changed my habits and my energy is much stronger throughout the day. Of course, a nap is a nice treat from time to time.

Medifast Coupons said...

Some great tips! Thanks for sharing! And get a good nights sleep everyone.

Medifast Coupon Code 2011 said...

All great tips and points, good post today.

Customized Essay said...

My appreciation for the great efforts you are doing for your blog..Thanks for sharing wonderful posting..

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