I’ve seen a few questions asked on both Instagram and Twitter on how to boost energy WITHOUT having to rely on a big mug of coffee every day. And luckily, there are ways to naturally recharge your body and increase your energy, and they don’t even require a Caribbean holiday (though if you can take one of those, you’re all set!).
1. Cut out all the processed, refined junk.
Besides destroying your health, and consequently beauty, here’s a news flash: fake food depletes your energy. The cookies, cakes, candy, ice cream, energy drinks, coffee, soda, and packaged or processed foods have got to go! I also consider most all packaged things junk, including faux “health foods” like protein bars, which contain a bevy of ingredients which are actually hard for your body to digest and assimilate. These things may give you an immediate boost when your energy starts to lag, but they’re not doing your body any favors. They just set you on a cycle to need more when the crashes happen, and left yourself wondering how to get energy again.
That cup of coffee in the morning won’t give you energy to last throughout the day, and you’ll probably find yourself reaching for another cup or some kind of sweets by the time afternoon rolls around in an attempt to stay focused and make it through the rest of the work day. If you cut these products out of your diet, your body will run so much more smoothly and you won’t waste precious energy trying to digest “food” that your body struggles with and can’t really use.
Stimulants like caffeine and sugar also steal your Beauty Energy, making you look as tired as you feel. They are acid-forming in the body. Don’t expect cutting out the caffeine and sugar to be a one-day fix; there will be a withdrawal period, especially where caffeine is concerned. John Hopkins Medicine has even listed caffeine withdrawal as a disorder. Stick out the pangs of withdrawal and you’ll feel so much better after it’s over. Feeding your body only natural foods will give you the nutrients your body can easily put to work for a more energetic you!
If you crave a warm beverage in the mornings, try replacing your coffee with hot water and lemon or a caffeine-free herbal tea. Rooibos is a great choice. When you start to crave something sweet halfway between lunch and dinner (at least a few hours after lunch), have some fruit. Take some to work with you and keep it in your desk so you’re not tempted to hit the vending machines. Some almonds or sunflower seeds (chew very well!) can also scratch that itch and help you make it until dinnertime. Another great alternative is crunchy veggie sticks and salsa or even hummus. Try my Zucchini Hummus!
2. Sweep those toxins out!
Once you stop inundating your body with processed or packaged foods, you’ll start to kick up the toxins that have been stored in your fat cells. You don’t want to keep those things floating around in your body, do you? Nope! Flush them out. Ways to do this:
Drink lots of (filtered) water! The Mayo Clinic recommends at least nine cups of fluid for women and 13 for men. This includes all beverages, though, so if you’re having coconut water, GGS, a green juice, or eating a lot of water-rich veggies and fruit (as you should be!), you may find that you’re able to get away with a little less plain water than that. If you drink lemon water in the morning, that will help flush the toxins out of your liver.
In addition to the obvious boost we’ll get from all the nutrients in ripe fruits and vegetables, they’re also fantastic for drawing toxins from the cells and carrying them out of the body, mainly because of their fiber content and alkalinity. When your body is carrying around less waste and fewer toxins, you’ll feel lighter and more energetic.
There are other ways of helping to encourage your body’s natural detoxification processes I mention in the Beauty Detox Solution, including taking probiotics, enemas and properly administered gravity colonics.
3. Give yourself a natural boost
When you need a pick-me-up, there are ways to give yourself a natural boost. First thing in the morning, your Glowing Green Smoothie will perk you up because it’s absolutely packed with nutrients. You might not be able to sit down with a fork and all the ingredients of the smoothie and gobble it all up first thing in the morning, but when it’s blended, all that nutrition your body can use instantly goes down easily.
Other things you may want to try are my Energy in a Spoon recipe (a little bee pollen with coconut oil drizzled on top) or extra B vitamins, particularly B12, which you can get from adding nutritional yeast to your food (it has a cheesy flavor).
Spirulina and chlorella will do the trick, too, thanks to their high protein content and B vitamins. Just mix a little spirulina with some coconut water (warning: the taste may take some getting used to!) or try chlorella tablets.
4. Be still and be grateful, then stretch
Sometimes, you just have to slow down a minute to recharge your body and mind. A few moments of quiet can work wonders. You can do this first thing in the morning to start your day off on the right foot, but if you start feeling a little frazzled or lethargic later in the morning or even in the afternoon or evening, you can take a few moments to clear your mind and focus on your breathing. It’s a great idea to pause after work and before the rest of your evening. Then spend some time thinking of what you’re grateful for. When you’re grateful for what you already have, you lose the energy-draining pull to have and achieve more and more. Love where you are right now. I’m not saying you should never set goals and set out to achieve them, but take things a day at a time and don’t lose sight of the beauty of your life as it is today.
You probably won’t break out the yoga moves in your cube at work no matter how restorative yoga is, especially not in a dress or nice slacks, but stretching also helps you reset your body any time. If you can get in a few poses (it doesn’t have to be an elaborate sequence or anything!) first thing in the morning after a few minutes of quiet, do. At work, you can do seated twists in your chair. You could also lock yourself in the bathroom to do a few standing poses, like warrior, forward fold, or pulling your heel up to your bottom (hold onto the counter and don’t do this in heels) to stretch out your thighs.
Studies actually show that work-site exercise programs can boost productivity (hinting at a recharged body and mind), but if your office doesn’t have anything like this, a few yoga poses in the bathroom and some deep breaths or a walk around the block in the sunshine can help.
5. Take your skin care up a notch
Your skin care routine can recharge your body and make you feel more energetic. You can add to the glow you’re already achieving through the Beauty Detox principles you’ve incorporated into your life. We’ve talked about dry brushing before, which makes your skin tingle and feel really awake (it also removes more toxins). It helps your circulation, which will more efficiently move the blood—and along with it, oxygen—through your body to perk you up.
Another thing you can do is use aromatherapy to feel recharged. Add a couple of drops of peppermint, ginger, or citrus pure essential oils to your body scrub or moisturizer, for example, or light a scented candle to enjoy while you get ready for your day. Keep a small bottle of your citrus-scented lotion in your drawer at work in case of an afternoon slump. Lemon oil has been shown to reduce stress in mice.If you’re using essential oils in your skin care products, always be sure they’re diluted well because they can be irritating to the skin when used alone or in high concentrations).
So now it’s your turn…work to incorporate these tips into your life! Try to avoid adding more toxins to your body while sweeping the old ones out, snack on natural energy boosters, be still, be grateful, stretch, and catch a whiff of your favorite minty or citrus scents to feel more recharged from morning until evening.