Healthy Energy Levels

young couple in hiking gear sitting down smiling and reading a map with a mountain backdropFeeling zapped?  You’re not alone.  One of the most common questions Cardiotabs founders, James O'Keefe, MD, and Joan O'Keefe, RD, hear from patients is how to improve energy levels.  Follow these top ways to boost your energy naturally without caffeine and you’ll be feeling better in no time!

1. Vitamin D

Autumn days are shorter.  Less daylight and the angle of the sun make it near impossible for your body to manufacture the vitamin D you need.  Vitamin D is actually a hormone and when depleted, you feel tired, depressed, achy and sometimes miserable.  Vitamin D is also important for immune health.*  We recommend a daily supplement of 2,000 IU vitamin D3. (Make sure you are taking D3.)  If you suspect a vitamin D deficiency, ask your doctor to test your vitamin D levels.

2. Hydrate

Are you drinking enough water?  One of the most common and often overlooked reasons for lack of energy is simply dehydration.  Even mild dehydration can lower cognition, cause “brain fog,” and make you feel sleepy.  A simple rule:  check your urine.  It should be pale yellow or clear.  If it’s not, drink water.  Avoid caffeinated drinks like coffee, as they may have a diuretic effect.  Flavor your water with cucumber, lemon, orange slices or berries.

3. Move! 

Yes, you’ll hear this advice from us time and time again, but that’s because it works.  When you’re feeling groggy, take ten minutes to go for a brisk walk in fresh air, get up from your desk and stretch, climb the stairs at work, turn on your favorite song and dance, or my favorite, hold an imaginary jump rope and jump 100 times.  Get in the habit of standing up and strolling while speaking on your cell phone - why do you think it’s called a MOBILE phone?! Phone conversations are an underutilized opportunity to get up and get moving.

4. Examine your lunch

Most of us know the feeling of the mid-afternoon slump.  Avoid it by eating the right lunch.  Too many simple carbohydrates and not enough protein and fiber at lunch causes your blood sugar level to spike, in turn your body releases insulin to bring it down, otherwise known as “crashing.”  Avoid this by eating a lunch full of color and lean protein.  

5. Check your CoQ10 levels

CoQ10 is a key enzyme used in the mitochondria, the little power plants where our cells generate and store nearly all of the energy needed to power our bodies. The brain, heart and muscles, be­cause of their high en­ergy requirements, are especially dependent upon adequate levels of CoQ10 for optimal function.* Replenishing more youthful CoQ10 levels can help promote cellular energy production.*

6. On a Statin?

Over 45?  Taking a statin drug to lower your cholesterol?  Both simple aging and statin drug use are associated with low levels of coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10).  Your cells need CoQ10 to produce energy.  When it’s depleted, you are too.   If you are physically active, you may notice it even more than others.  A daily supplement will help, but be careful.  Our bodies have a difficult time absorbing CoQ10 in many supplement forms.  We recommend 150 mg of highly-absorbable CoQ10 in ubiquinone form.

7. Schedule tea time

Tea is a powerful antioxidant and contains natural compounds that can boost clarity, mood, and energy levels – even decaffeinated tea has this power.  Green tea is best, but black tea is also a great choice.  Add lemon, orange peel, or mint, but please don’t add sugar or artificial sweeteners as these negate the effects.  Our family drinks a lot of tea, but we still don’t drink enough to enjoy the maximum benefits.  A daily supplement, like CardioTea, provides the mood-boosting effects of tea and can help promote healthy weight loss.* CardioTabs Heart