With coffee shops on every corner, it's become almost too easy to fuel our lives with caffeine. Too much caffeine can impact your health in some not-so-pretty ways. We're talking increased anxiety levels, stomach issues, and insomnia - and this is just a portion of the possible side effects. What if you could get energy without having to resort to your morning cup of joe or that afternoon iced tea? Here are 7 ways to boost your energy sans caffeine:
Exercise - Not only is exercising beneficial to your overall health and wellness - it will actually boost your energy levels too! Physical activity gets your blood flowing and sends oxygen to your cells, while also causing your body to release epinephrine and norepinephrine (stress hormones that in small amounts can boost energy). The good news is that you don't need to sweat for hours in the gym to reap these energy-boosting benefits - a brisk walk or some yoga will do the trick. Time to get moving!
Apple cider vinegar (ACV) - We just loveee ACV - probably because it seems to help with just about everything health-related. ACV improves immunity and digestion, and it's really no surprise to us that it boosts energy levels too! Before tackling your day, try an ACV shot by mixing together 1 tsp of raw honey, 2 tbsp of water, and 1 tbsp of ACV. You'll be saying adios to your morning coffee in no time!
Get outside - If you're hitting an afternoon slump at the office, head outside for a few minutes. Spending time outside can reduce stress hormones and help lower blood pressure. If you can catch some sun while you're out there, even better - sunlight has been shown to increase the body's serotonin levels, which will lift your mood and increases energy levels.
- Vitamin B12 - Getting enough vitamin B12 (also known as the "energy vitamin") is essential to your overall health. If you're deficient in vitamin B12, you'll most likely experience a dip in your energy levels. Since your body can't store extra amounts of B12 for very long, it's important to take a daily supplement or eat foods like shellfish, eggs, and dairy on a regular basis.
- Lemon water - Sipping on some lemon water first thing in the morning will help get your body cleansed and energized. Lemons help balance your pH levels, and are a great source of potassium, citric acid, calcium, and magnesium. The secret is to drink lemon water warm or hot - this will help flush toxins quicker and in turn increase your energy levels faster. As an added bonus, lemon water will keep your bathroom visits regular too (yay)!
- Peppermint - If you're hitting a wall and need a boost, try making some peppermint tea and taking in the scent. The smell of peppermint increases oxygen levels in the brain, which will in turn increase your focus and wake you up. If tea isn't your thing, try adding some peppermint oil drops to your shower or an oil diffuser for that extra boost of energy.
- Chia seeds - These tiny little seeds are packed with protein, fiber, and essential fatty acids to provide prolonged energy. It's not just energy you'll be gaining either - chia seeds help regulate glands, fight adrenal fatigue, and combat inflammation! Try making some chia seed pudding for breakfast. Mix 1 cup of almond milk with 1/2 cup of chia seeds and a little honey, and refrigerate overnight. YUM!