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5 Instant Natural Energy Boosters When You're Feeling Tired

Are you reaching for a second or third cup of coffee throughout these December days? The holiday season calls for extra energy but that doesn’t mean caffeine is the best way to fight fatigue. In fact, it may be the opposite.

The instant energy boost you get from caffeine is usually followed by a crash. If this crash coincides with a time of day that your body has a natural energy dip – say, midafternoon during that important business meeting – then you’re going to feel majorly drowsy.

Treating that drowsiness with another cup of coffee may seem like a brilliant solution. But it’s a different story when nighttime rolls around and you can’t get to sleep. See where this is going? It’s a vicious cycle.

The good news … you’re not doomed to feeling tired every time the clock strikes 3 p.m. Read on for ideas to improve healthy living when you’re feeling tired and get you through the holidays, energy intact.

5 Instant Natural Energy Boosters

1. Hydrate: Drinking water is one of the best ways to get natural energy. One of the first signs of dehydration is fatigue. Some people find it especially hard to drink enough water during the colder months of the year. Herbal teas are a great winter beverage. They provide the hydration you need, warm you from the inside out, and taste delicious.

2. Meditate: A study suggests that meditation can improve brain function and energy levels. The next time you feel sluggish or foggy, take a few moments to meditate. Sit in a comfortable position with your back straight and focus on breathing in and out. If you’re someone who has trouble focusing on your own, try a phone app that takes you through a guided meditation. The result is a clearer mind that has space to think about the rest of your day.

3. Eat for energy: Our brains need constant nutrients to perform at their maximum potential and nourishing foods are instant natural energy boosters. If you’re feeling sluggish after your meals, try breaking them up into smaller meals that you eat throughout the day. For example, eat a smaller lunch at noon and have a healthy snack midafternoon, when energy levels naturally dip.

4. Exercise: It’s easy to skip exercise when you’re feeling tired. But exercise creates energy. Working out brings oxygen and glucose to the muscles and brain, providing an instant natural energy boost. You don’t have to run miles to feel the effects. A brisk walk or a 15 minute Pilates set is enough to get your energy pumping.

5. Limit stress: There’s good stress, like deadlines and obligations that are exciting and make life meaningful. But when you’re over-extended, it can zap your energy. It’s important to set clear expectations at work and in relationships so you don’t feel pulled in a million directions. Taking care of your family, work stress, and caring for an ailing parent (not to mention the busiest time of year!) all tax energy levels. Take moments for yourself each day, even if it’s a deep breath of an energizing aromatherapy scent. And don’t be afraid to ask for help.

Adding a few healthy habits into your daily routine and nixing the extra caffeine will help you to feel more energized. You will likely even begin to look forward to them. And you’ll definitely be the most rested looking (and feeling!) person at your holiday party.