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Tips for managing energy slumps

Written by Sarah on

We all get slumps in our energy levels at some point and they can really derail your positive nutrition and exercise habits. Here’s some tips to try and help you maintain your energy levels throughout the day.

Are you getting enough sleep? You should be aiming for 7-8 hours a night. If you’re getting less than this on a regular basis and feeling tired a lot this may be why. Try to get to bed earlier and see if it makes a difference.

Are you moving enough? If you have a sedentary job try and get up and walk around/have a stretch every hour. Walking for 10 minutes after eating can help manage your blood sugar levels as well. If you can get outside and get fresh air, even better. Getting enough regular exercise a week (150 minutes of moderate/75 minutes of high intensity) should help you to feel more energised.

Are you eating enough? If you’re feeling tired it might be because your body doesn’t have enough fuel to run optimally (like trying to run a car on fumes!) Are you consuming enough calories for your body and are you spreading them out across the day eg 3 meals or 3 meals and 2 snacks?

Are you eating the right things for your body? You might be feeling tired because your blood sugar is crashing. If this is the case and you notice that you feel especially lethargic in the 2 hours after eating carbohydrates you could try and manage your blood sugar more effectively. Combine carbs (whole grains where possible) with fat, protein and fibre to slow the digestion of them and subsequent release of glucose into your blood stream rather than having stand alone carbs.

Are you drinking enough water? If you’re not then dehydration might be making you feel tired and light headed and impairing your concentration. Aim for 8 glasses a day.

Are you drinking too much caffeine? If you drink a lot of caffeinated drinks throughout the day you might find your energy levels dipping in between as your body craves its next caffeine hit. Try reducing your intake/limiting it to mornings only and see if it improves your energy levels (once you’ve got through the withdrawal, you might feel worse before you feel better but it is possible to lower your intake successfully).

Are you stressed? When we are stressed we can become physically and mentally exhausted. Find daily habits to help with day-to-day stress levels like meditation, yoga, digital detox in the evenings, exercise, reading, talking things through with a friend/family member or whatever works for you. If your stress levels are feeling unmanageable then speak to your GP for further support.

Are you getting enough vitamin D? Taking a supplement in the winter months is recommended in the UK as our body is unable to synthesise enough from sunlight and it is hard to obtain a sufficient amount through diet alone. It’s a fat soluble vitamin so try to take it alongside a meal or snack containing fat.

Where are you in your menstrual cycle (if you have one)? You might find that there are certain days where your hormones are working against you and causing fatigue (usually in the days just before your period). It’s helpful to log your cycle so you can identify patterns and try and plan around these times as much as possible to allow yourself more rest on those days. You can also prioritise making sure you’re eating enough of the right foods at the right times and getting some light exercise on those days when it feels like your hormones are working against you.

If you’ve tried the steps above and are still struggling with energy levels it might be worth booking an appointment with your GP to see if they can check for any deficiencies or conditions which might be causing your fatigue.

If you need some support with moving more or eating more healthily get in touch for a free consultation.

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