Gemma McCaw's top tips for giving yourself an instant energy boost

Feeling flat? Give yourself an energy boost with these easy ideas.

By Gemma McCaw
Being energised helps us to cope with all the different demands in our busy lives. We give so much of our time and effort to those around us, so it's no wonder we're often left feeling tired and depleted.
It's worth reassessing our lifestyles occasionally to see where positive changes can be made towards boosting our energy levels.
Feeling energised is a key ingredient for leading a healthy and happy life.

Positive Vibes

Remember to schedule in things you enjoy and spend time with people you love. Studies show that people with stronger social networks are thought to have better mental and physical health.
If you are feeling tired, it can be helpful to surround yourself with people who energise you.

Drink up

When you are dehydrated, your brain can't function properly and you will feel far less energetic.
Try drinking water when you wake up, as well as consistently throughout the day. It is the easiest habit to get into and one of the fundamentals to a more energised lifestyle.
People who are dehydrated often have poorer memory functions and experience increasing amounts of anxiety and fatigue.

Eat Well

High energy levels are helped by eating good, nutritious food. The key throughout the day is to keep your blood sugar levels balanced.
When you reach for processed foods high in sugar and fat, your blood sugar spikes, then crashes suddenly, which can leave you feeling wiped out.
If you're doing this constantly throughout the day, by the evening, you'll be exhausted. A recent study found that those who have erratic meal patterns or skip meals are more prone to fatigue.

Bedtime Booze

It's easy to think that a glass of wine might help you wind down in the evenings, but in reality, the opposite can occur.
While initially alcohol can help you fall asleep, it interferes with your sleep cycle so you are not able to get the deep, restorative rest you need.
By cutting down on the odd night cap, you get better-quality sleep and are able to feel more energised the next day.

Catch Some ZZZs

Sleep is often the first thing you sacrifice when you're busy, but it's one of the most important elements of health and wellbeing.
Skimping on shut-eye can result in irritability and lethargy.
Everyone has different requirements, but aiming for around seven to eight hours a night is recommended.
If you think you could do with more sleep, try winding down 30 minutes earlier than usual.
Do something relaxing before bed like reading or taking a bath. Another thing linked with poor-quality sleep is the use of screens before bed, so keep an eye on your phone use before bedtime.

Get Moving

It may sound counter-intuitive as we often see exercise as demanding large amounts of our energy, but the truth is a workout actually gives us energy.
We often look for a quick fix like caffeine, energy bars or sports drinks, but increasing the movement in your day boosts energy and reduces fatigue.
If you are inactive, try to find something you enjoy doing, even if it's something small like a lunchtime walk, as this can transform the way you think, feel and function.

Take Control

Stress and anxiety can suck up all your energy, leaving you both mentally and physically exhausted.
While it is impossible to completely remove stress, changing up aspects of your lifestyle can help immensely.
Some quick strategies include gentle exercise, quality sleep or taking some time out for yourself.

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