Our bodies need fuel to function optimally. However, the way we get these fuels have a huge impact on our energy levels.
The most common cause of low energy has everything to do with what you are putting into your body. Your brain primarily runs on glucose for energy under normal circumstances. That is why people who deal with glucose dysregulation, like diabetes, tend to have lower energy levels and are constantly fatigued. The acute dips and spikes in glucose levels are usually to blame in cases like this.
Fortunately, there is a way to maximize your energy by controlling your glucose levels! Ironically, the more energy we have in our body in the form of glucose, the less energetic we may feel.
Studies have found when glucose levels are sharply elevated, there is a significant decrease in energy, focus, and cognition. To put this into context, I want you to think about a time when you experienced the infamous urge to fall asleep after eating a huge meal. The period of time you are fighting to not fall asleep is due to your glucose levels being spiked.
Similarly, this happens when your glucose dips too low. In some cases, this happens after a post-meal glucose spike and can lead to fatigue and lack of energy. However, studies suggest that adjusting eating patterns can minimize these symptoms.
A case study showed how modifying eating habits to eating smaller meals, more frequently can have a positive effect on your energy and glucose levels. It is recommended to eat every 2-3 hours and start off with a high protein breakfast within 30 minutes of waking up. Doing so enhances metabolic processes, which allows your body to absorb the nutrients from your food for energy.
It is important to note, that following a typical Standard American Diet may not be the best thing for someone dealing with low energy and fluctuation of blood sugars. Foods and drinks like coffee, milk, muffins, and bread can have a serious effect on your body and energy levels. This is because they are usually high in sugar and carbohydrates which encourages blood sugars to rise and follows up with a serious crash 1-2 hours later. Carbohydrates are damaging to your brain and body in many ways and heighten your risk of diabetes, heart attack, or stroke.
Now, understanding your personal glucose levels in response to food can significantly improve your energy and reduce feelings of fatigue. Here are a few ways to do so…
Do not skip breakfast! Even if you are not hungry, you should always start your day with a protein-packed breakfast. Try eating a veggie omelet or Easy Meal shake to stabilize your energy throughout the day.
Eat within an hour of waking up. Around 8 am your adrenal glands start to produce the highest levels of cortisol for the entire day. This helps your body wake up and get your day started. Eating breakfast within one hour of waking up can offset any feelings of stress or low energy.
Snack on protein. Try snacking on hard-boiled eggs or veggies with hummus. Doing so, can improve your performance throughout the day and eliminate any energy crashes that may come from a sugary snack.
Improve your metabolic health. Incorporating metabolic health strategies like optimizing sleep and engaging in regular exercise can help control your glucose levels.
I always recommend sticking to the basics when it comes to health, however, I do want to empower you to take your wellness to the next level. You can do this by enrolling in The Lifestyle Clinic for personalized health solutions. To learn more, click here!