While a cup of coffee may have hit the spot this morning to get you primed for the day, chances are it’ll be time to call in for reinforcements by the time the afternoon rolls around.
These 10 solutions pack an energy-boosting punch, sans caffeine jitters:
>> Reach for protein: Snack on something at least 10 grams of protein to produce a steady rise in blood sugar and energy levels, counteracting a post-carb crash.
>> Swig cold water: Cold triggers the stimulating hormone adrenaline, which helps your heart pump stronger, boosting bloodflow to your brain.
Additionally, drinking water revives shriveled cells after hours of sleep-induced dehydration, which is known to cause tiredness.
>> Sip green tea: Where overdosing on coffee may make you jittery, green tea has just enough caffeine to boost production of the hormone adrenocorticotropin, which triggers the release of cortisol.
It also contains EGCG, a flavonoid that promotes focus and calmness. Drink a glass about 90 minutes before you need it to kick in, experts say.
>> Breathe deeply: Through deep breathing, you’ll deliver a larger amount of oxygen to the brain, keeping you more alert.
>> Eat regular meals: Studies have shown that missing even one meal can cause fatigue by the end of the day. Eating regularly keeps your blood sugar balanced and energy levels high.
>> Take a walk outside: Get outside for at least 15 minutes to soak up vitamin D from the sun. Plus, a brisk walk gets your blood flowing, which can improve circulation and mental function.
>> Munch on nuts or pumpkin seeds: Magnesium breaks down glucose into energy, so being even slightly low in this mineral can cause a dip in energy.
Nuts and seeds, both rich in the mineral, can provide a quick boost.
>> Say no to sugar: Sure a sugary snack will deliver a quick energy boost — but it will also cause your blood sugar (and energy) to plummet later.
Opt for whole grains instead: They offer complex carbohydrates that the body digests and releases slowly, keeping your blood sugar stable.
>> Exercise: Regular physical activity increases energy and fights fatigue by raising levels of mood-boosting serotonin as well as norepinephrine and dopamine, brain chemicals that give you pep.
>> And stretch: Awaken your muscles and your brain with re-energizing office stretches.