Why low energy isn’t just a case of getting more sleep

Low energy and fatigue are common complaints of people in today's hectic world and are something that I see quite often (and used to suffer with myself on a daily basis!). There are many factors involved in low energy, so it’s important to get to the root cause rather than just working on the symptoms, and I would recommend testing to rule out any deficiencies. Low levels of iron, B12, and vitamin D can all contribute to low energy levels, as can imbalanced thyroid hormones.


1. The healing power of water

One simple way in which you can increase your energy levels is to make sure you are hydrated. Water is essential for the body to function effectively and keep the cells communicating well.

If you find it hard to start with, then there are plenty of apps that you can use to help to reach your target by setting reminders to drink and if you don’t like the taste then you can try adding some fruit or herbs to the water to give it a nice flavour. Smoothies and herbal teas can also count towards your hydration but limit teas and coffees as the caffeine can leave you further dehydrated.

2. Pay attention to your hormones

Hormones can also play a big part in energy levels and are worth looking into. Thyroid hormones, stress, insulin, and sleep hormones can all have an impact on your energy levels and leave you craving sugar and carbs to get that 'quick fix' of energy during the day, often leading to a constant cycle of energy 'crashes' throughout the day and more quick fixes leaving you tired and wired at the end of the day!

If you feel like you may have a hormone deficiency, then please visit your GP for testing and diagnosis.

3. Eating to boost energy

Making sure you are eating a well-balanced diet with plenty of protein with meals and snacks such as nuts, beans, good quality meat, and eggs, whilst including some slow-releasing carbohydrates such as oats, brown rice, quinoa and a variety of vegetables will help to ensure you are getting enough nutrients required for energy production.

4. Practicing good sleep hygiene

A good sleep hygiene practice is also worth including in your day as the quality of your sleep can have a big impact on your energy levels aside from just how many hours you are getting. If you aren’t getting good quality sleep then you may find you struggle to get going in the morning and reach for caffeine or sugar for a quick fix!

Switching off electronics an hour before bedtime and having some time to 'wind down' such as meditation, a warm bath or reading can help to improve your sleep quality. If you find it hard to switch off at night because you are anxious or worried about something then writing things down in a journal can be helpful in relieving this.

If you find yourself struggling on a daily basis with your energy levels and are tired of feeling tired all the time, then seeking some advice and support can be beneficial. A nutrition professional can help you identify the reason why you are tired, and help put you on the right track to living with more energy and vitality!

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Nutritionist Resource are reviewed by our editorial team.

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