Too little sleep may not be the only reason your energy is flagging. Getting through your day will be much harder if you have these bad habits:
You’re not drinking enough water. If you’re even a little bit dehydrated—as little as 2 percent of normal fluid loss—it zaps your energy levels. If you’re dehydrated, you have less blood volume, which makes the blood thicker. This makes your heart pump less efficiently, which, in turn, slows down the speed at which oxygen and nutrients reach your muscles and organs. What fluid needs are normal for you? Take your weight in pounds, divide in half and drink that number of ounces of fluid a day.
You skip breakfast. Food fuels your body. While you sleep, your body continues using the fuel from dinner to keep your blood pumping. When you wake up in the morning, you need to replenish your fuel stores with breakfast. If you don’t eat breakfast, you'll feel sluggish. Make sure your morning meal includes lean protein, whole grains and healthy fat. Good examples include eggs with two slices of whole-wheat toast and low-fat Greek yogurt; oatmeal and a small amount of peanut butter; or a fruit smoothie made with protein powder, low-fat milk and almond butter.
You use caffeine to keep yourself charged. A cup of coffee first thing in the morning isn’t a problem. Studies show up to three daily cups of coffee is good for you. But using caffeine throughout the day as an energy booster can disrupt your sleep-wake cycle. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine found that consuming caffeine even six hours before bedtime affects sleep, so have your last java jolt by mid-afternoon.
You work through vacation. Your idea of relaxing includes responding to email while lounging on the beach. You’re a vacation scrooge, and you run the risk of burnout. Taking a break means unplugging and allowing your mind and body to rejuvenate. When you return to work rested, you’ll be more effective.
Read more about why you may be so tired at BlackHealthMatters.Com.
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