Remember when you were younger and, unless you had some unusual condition, physical energy came naturally and sometimes in big doses; good health, except for the occasional cold, was a “given” and something you probably took it for granted.
If you were anything like me in your teens and twenties, you ate lots of pizza and fast food, drank too much on Friday nights, got too little sleep and took chances with your safety and well-being – all the things you might now be warning your kids not to do!
But, like me, you find that life is different now. Your body might not function as well when you only get a couple hours of sleep. Good health has taken a higher position of importance and you probably watch what you eat and drink and make an effort to stay fit.
Here are a couple easy ways to boost your physical energy
- Eat Breakfast. As soon as you can after waking, have 200 calories of high quality food. Here’s why: Your body is like a furnace that needs to be stoked to function well. Overnight, when you are at rest, your body slows itself down. Breakfast stokes the fire and gets it roaring again.
- If you don’t usually have time to make breakfast, keep hard boiled eggs in the refrigerator and store a small bag of almonds in your handbag or car. One egg and 30 almonds (about 200 calories) will get your metabolism (the furnace) started and make a huge difference in the way your body functions. A protein shake will do the same thing. Avoid a carb-loaded treat until you are eating a meal with other foods that will help balance your blood sugar.
- Drink more water. Did you know that sometimes your body confuses thirst with tiredness? Stay hydrated. If you don’t like water, add a couple slices of lemon to a pitcher. Don’t squeeze. Just float the lemons on top. And other drinks count too because they hydrate (except for those with caffeine and alcohol – both tend to dehydrate you).
- Go to bed. If you can’t get eight hours (and who can?), then sneak in a power nap at lunch. Some research indicated that a 20-30 nap will make up for what you don’t get at night.
- See the doctor. Get an annual physical with complete blood-work that checks thyroid, vitamin D and hormones. You would be amazed at the difference something as simple as taking Vitamin D can make. But D can also be harmful to you if you take too much. Or maybe you are anemic or have low thyroid. Only blood-work and a competent doctor will be able to tell what you need.
- Be proactive. When you see a doctor, dentist or any other kind of healthcare professional, ask a million questions. OK, maybe only a thousand :-)…and don’t be embarrassed or intimidated if the health care person gets annoyed. Too many mistakes are made with patients in health care and you don’t want to be one of them.
- And don’t be embarrassed to ask you doctor to wash his/her hands before touching you – it’s the biggest way germs are transmitted and s/he shouldn’t have to be told by the patient to do it.