With work, family obligations and our relationships all fighting for our attention every day, it’s easy to feel down and tired.
Advertisements all around us tout energy-boosting miracle cures, but there is little to no scientific evidence that many of those supplements actually work. Fortunately, there are a number of things you can easily do to sharpen your mind and get your blood pumping.
In this episode of Health Hacks, Doctor Mike Varshavski, a board-certified physician in New York City, recommends six science-backed ways to increase your energy levels:
1. Differentiate your stressors: There are two different types of stressors — short term and long term. Acute stressors, like exercise, are good for our minds and bodies. Ongoing stressors, like difficulties at work or tension in your social life, can drain your energy levels and cause further health problems. Take a closer look at the stress in your life and decide what you can do without.
2. Visit your doctor: Rule out underlying medical conditions that could be causing you to have low energy levels, such as anemia.
3. Express yourself: You may not realize it, but constantly repressing your emotions can result in bodily symptoms like low energy levels and body aches. Call a trusted friend and tell them what’s going on in your life. That kind of sharing can take the weight off your shoulders.
4. Sweat for energy: It may sound counterintuitive since exercising can tire you out, but the endorphin rush you get from working out can give you the energy you need to complete tasks you wouldn’t otherwise have.
5. Willpower it up: A common cause of low energy levels is low willpower, and the best way to increase your willpower is to perform a specific, disciplined task for an extended period of time. For example, if you brush your teeth with your right hand, switch to your left. It’s a simple task that can immediately boost your energy.
6. Avoid blue light before bed: It’s tempting to be on your phone or laptop while you’re winding down, but these devices emit a blue light that can be counterproductive to rest. It doesn’t allow you to naturally progress through the stages of sleep, so you wake up feeling less than refreshed. Try to avoid using those electronics at least two hours before bedtime.
Remember, we live in a fast-paced world — and there’s nothing wrong with taking a breather every once in a while.
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