December 3, 2012
By Betty Murray
It’s the first week of December. Are you already feeling the effects of the holiday rush? As we get older, our energy levels seem to decline, especially at this time of year. The main reason so many women are lacking energy? Busy schedules, too many places to go and things to do.
While there may be little you can do during the Christmas season to lighten the load on your calendar, here are some other tips to give you the boost in energy you need to get through the season.
• Sleep well — No one can deny that a good night’s sleep works wonders on energy levels the following day. Unfortunately, sound sleep is hard to come by these days. To ensure a full night’s rest, give yourself time to relax before going to sleep. Aromatherapy and a hot bath are two great ways to relax. Keep your bedroom dark, eliminating as much light as possible and avoid snacking or drinking anything with caffeine right before bed.
• Eat and snack smart – Skipping meals during the day is a sure way to guarantee you won’t have the energy you need. To keep your body fueled, eat every four hours. Snacks should be less than 200 calories and include carbs, fiber and protein. Carboydrates will give you a quick pickup, while protein will follow with lasting energy. Fiber helps keep you satisfied until your next meal.
• Get your caffeine from tea – Caffeine is known to boost energy, as it helps the body break down stored fats into fatty acids, which can be used for energy. However, caffeine can also have negative side effects. For best results, you should get no more than 150 milligrams of caffeine each day — all which should be consumed before 2 p.m. to avoid interrupting your sleep. Skip the sodas and flavored coffee drinks, all of which are packed with empty calories. Hot herbal teas and green tea are better, healthier sources of caffeine.
• Get outside – Take advantage of the unseasonably warm December weather and go for a walk or light jog by the lake during daylight hours. Exercise in and of itself can boost your energy levels, but the fresh oxygen you breath while outside makes outdoor exercise more beneficial than indoor exercise.
• Drink water – Dehydration will make you feel sluggish and lethargic. Drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep your body hydrated and keep you feeling energized and focused.
Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.