The Worst Habit For Energy Levels
The worst habit for energy levels might surprise you. According to Dr. Mary Valvano, a physician from BetterNowMD, it’s eating your biggest meal at the end of the day. “The adage ‘eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and supper like a pauper’ is actually based in biology,” she said. “Cells in our body metabolize food differently based on the time of day. Eating the same meal at 8 a.m. versus 6 p.m. can affect our body’s ability to use it for energy.”
Eating a late meal, especially very late at night, can impair our blood sugar levels and the ability to get optimal energy from the next day’s meals.
By eating more at the beginning of the day versus the end, you may find that you have a lot more energy throughout the day. A big part of the reason eating a big meal at night is so problematic for energy levels is that it disrupts our sleep. Big, late-night meals mess with our body’s natural circadian rhythm, making it harder to get quality rest. Not getting enough sleep, especially deep sleep, will unquestionably drain your energy.
Other Habits That Aren’t Great
Now that you know to avoid big meals at the end of the day and make sure you’re getting enough sleep, let’s look at other habits that could be draining your energy levels. Energy drinks, for example, are probably draining your energy, according to experts. Studies also show that energy drinks can endanger heart and brain health, cause inflammation, and increase your blood pressure.
However, other caffeinated beverages like tea, especially green or fermented tea, can help improve energy levels. Consuming caffeine from these sources can support the mitochondria, which are responsible for producing energy in our cells.
Living a sedentary lifestyle and having a diet high in sugar and processed foods can also contribute to poor energy levels. Regular exercise can help improve energy levels by increasing blood flow and oxygen to the brain and muscles. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise each day, such as brisk walking, cycling, or swimming.
A diet that is rich in whole, unprocessed foods can help provide sustained energy throughout the day. Focus on eating a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. Avoid consuming too much sugar and processed foods, as these can cause energy crashes.
Finally, chronic stress is a big reason for diminished energy levels, as fatigue is a known side effect of stress and emotional exhaustion. Practice stress-management techniques such as meditation, deep breathing, or yoga to help reduce stress levels and improve energy.
When To Talk To Your Doctor
A little fatigue here and there probably isn’t anything to worry about and can be fixed with a few simple tweaks. However, if your fatigue lasts longer than a week or two, you should probably see a doctor, according to Harvard Health. This is especially true if you have other symptoms like fever, loss of appetite, or shortness of breath.
Low energy levels can be associated with various health conditions, such as infections, hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, and sleep disorders. Lifestyle factors such as lack of physical activity, poor nutrition, and stress can also contribute to low energy levels. If you are experiencing persistent low energy levels, it may be a good idea to talk to a doctor.
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