As you move into a New Year, you may be ready to make health changes. You may be motivated and optimistic. Or, you may feel overwhelmed, fatigued or even discouraged by everything going on in the world today. No matter your current mood, to accomplish any goals this year, start with more energy!
Feeling “more energy” is often subjective. In its simplest form, energy is derived from consuming calories, or units of energy.
However, there’s more to it than that. There are vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and other compounds at work in our bodies that make consumed energy usable to the body. There is the health of cells, tissues, and organs, and whether or not they effectively respond to the compounds. There are also emotional, mental and physical factors that drain our energy and cause feelings of fatigue.
Where can you start to get more energy?
Let’s start with units of energy and compounds that help our body use them. Then, let’s focus on ways to make your cells healthy enough to effectively and efficiently use the energy. Lastly, let’s conquer a few “energy” drainers with simply healthy habits.
Mix all ingredients in a blender, adding water as needed for desired consistently (I typically use about 1 cup water). Makes 1 large serving. Enjoy!
Nutrition info: 415 calories, 13 grams fat, 8 grams net carbs (26 grams carbs, 18 grams fiber), 26 grams protein
While there’s not much caffeine in this smoothie, there’s enough to “wake up” the brain and provide a subtle pick-me-up any time of day.
How does caffeine affect energy?
Caffeine crosses the blood-brain barrier to inhibit adenosine in the brain. Adenosine is a neurotransmitter that quiets the central nervous system (1). Then, without adenosine in the way, epinephrine increases. Epinephrine stimulates the body and brain. These effects are enough to increase subjective feelings of energy, physical performance, and brain alertness.
What’s more, green and black tea contain antioxidants and phytochemicals to support cellular and whole-body health. In fact, green tea contains a compound called L-theanine. L-theanine promotes steady energy (2). Green tea has also been shown to boost physical performance, increase the breakdown of fat for energy, and stimulate norepinephrine(3, 4, 5).
Chlorophyll, found in Divine Health® Fermented Green Supremefood® and fresh greens, is the lifeblood of plants. When consumed by humans, it’s one of the best energizing foods. Similar to hemoglobin, chlorophyll carries nutrients in the blood. However, it doesn’t carry iron. It carries another energizing mineral, magnesium (6). Magnesium supports the production of energy throughout the body as well as healthy sleep cycles.
Furthermore, chlorophyll helps alkalize the body and urine pH. This supports liver function and helps the body remove toxins like metals, pesticides, and more.
Look to chlorophyll to energize your body in many of the same ways it energizes and stimulates plants!
Organic apple cider vinegar is an ingredient in many folk medicine cures. It is known to fight both bacterial and viral infections, yeasts, and more.
How does it energize?
One great effect of consuming apple cider vinegar is that it causes the sinuses to drain and throat pathways to clear. As they clear and dilate, they allow for better oxygen transport from your head to your lungs to your body. Essentially, it promotes clear breathing!
Importantly, you should never drink it straight. Always dilute to just 1-2 tablespoons per 8 ounces liquid to protect your esophagus while supporting immune health, liver health, and alkalization of the body.
Beets are vibrant and nutritious. They contain amazingly energizing compounds, called betanins. Betanins are responsible for beet’s many health benefits in the human body, including antioxidant and anti-inflammatory actions (7). What’s more, beets also support the production and work of glutathione, a powerful antioxidant our cells make to fight damaging substances.
Beets also promote vasodilation. This makes them one of the great energizing foods! Beets contain natural nitrates that are converted to nitric oxides in the body. Nitric oxides dilate blood vessels, allowing more oxygen to circulate more efficiently. Nitric oxide may also increase muscle tissues’ ability to use oxygen (8).
One of the best ways to get the power of beets is through a fruit and vegetable powder like Divine Health® Organic Red Supremefood®.
Believe it or not, your digestive tract health is one key to energizing your body. In fact, specific fibers, called inulin and psyllium husk, directly support digestive health and energy. They both stimulate the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut, improve digestion, and support immune health (9, 10).
When digestion is working right, your body can absorb and use all the energizing foods and nutrients you give it!
Of course, there are many factors, lifestyle habits, and individual characteristics that contribute to feelings of energy or fatigue in each of us. Here are a few to focus on as you work for more energy this year:
Before working on a list of positive changes for the new year, simply learn how to energize your body better! Start with our Divine Health More Energy Smoothie, add delicious, healthy, energizing foods to your diet, and work on lifestyle habits that support health and energy. It’s a new year. Get more energy now!