ENERGY BOOSTING 101: 4 NATURAL WAYS TO GET ENERGIZED WITH EASTERN MEDICINE
Caffeine Isn’t The Only Way
Do you feel like you’re in a low-energy slump that you just can’t pull yourself out of? Would you describe your overall energy level as “blegh?”
These days, many of us are so obsessed with working and grinding 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. But what happens when your energy just disappears out of nowhere and you can’t seem to get it back?
Unfortunately, that extra shot of espresso or matcha in your latte won’t actually help you with your energy for very long–and it could stop you from getting the rest you need to stop feeling like this in the first place!
But don’t worry–Starbucks may not have the answer to your problems, but Eastern Medicine does. We pulled some of the best tips and tricks from Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Ayurveda to bring you 4 natural ways to boost your energy and vitality ASAP.
Food As Medicine
If you’re familiar with Eastern medicine, you know that many practitioners of both TCM and Ayurveda think of food as medicine. That means one of the best ways to increase your energy levels is by eating the right foods at the right times. Try adding some energy-boosting foods while deleting the options that will make you feel sluggish and slow.
|Strawberries: These berries contain antioxidants and natural sugars that give your body energy but are low in fat. Opt for organic strawberries as they are less likely to contain pesticides.
|Red Meat: Red Meat is high in protein, but it’s also got a lot of fat. Fatty foods are harder for our bodies to break down, so they make us tired.
|Goji berries: A study showed that consuming 4 ounces of Goji berry juice can raise energy levels, improve sleep, and boost physical activity.
|Refined Carbs: Refined carbs like pasta and bread give you a jolt of energy that’s quickly followed by plunging blood sugar levels–a major source for fatigue.
|Bananas: As most athletes know, bananas are one of the best foods for natural energy thanks to their high levels of potassium, Vitamin B6, and complex carbs.
|Salty, Fried Food: Like red meat, fried foot has a lot of fat that’s hard to break down. Meanwhile, salty foods can cause water retention that makes you feel sluggish or slow.
|Salmon: This fish is high in powerful protein plus Vitamin B which helps with energy production.
|Alcohol: This is probably no surprise, but drinking alcohol is bad for your energy levels because it’s a depressant. It can also interrupt your sleep if you drink before bed, making you even more tired.
Another good rule to stick by is eating mostly fresh, whole foods. In Ayurveda, prana is the essential life force that energizes us. Processed foods tend to be less pranic than fresh fruits and veggies, so try to eat in-season local produce as much as possible.
Supplement Your Diet
Before Western medicine had pills and prescriptions, Eastern medicine had herbal supplements. Both TCM and Ayurvedic practice recognizes certain plants and herbs as helpful for boosting vitality. Here are some popular herbs that can add vital nutrients and vitamins back into your diet:
- Ginseng: Ginseng is a popular herb in TCM, and studies have been done that show that it’s great for mental fatigue and boosting energy. Studies recommend adding 200 to 1,000 mg a day to your diet.
- Astragalus: Astragalus, or Huang Qi, is used as a TCM remedy for everything from night sweats to diarrhea. It’s traditionally been used as a sort of ancient energy drink, and studies show that it helps fatigue in mice.
- Jujube: Also known as Chinese Red Date or Hong Shao, jujube is a sweet, delicious fruit that is chock full of antioxidants and and Vitamin C. TCM uses it to boost energy, and studies show that it helps athletes exercise harder and for longer without feeling extra fatigue.
Some supplements, like our wellrounded blend, contain a mixture of these and other herbs that have energizing and revitalizing properties. They can come in pills, tinctures, and teas and are easy to incorporate into your daily routine.
At the end of the day, no matter how hard you try to raise your natural energy levels, it won’t do much for you if you’re continually not getting enough rest. No amount of herbs, caffeine, or food can replace good old fashioned sleep and relaxation. According to TCM, resting both your body and mind helps to grow your yin levels, which makes up half of your Qi.
But resting alone isn’t enough. Have you ever sat on the couch watching TV but the whole time you’re thinking about how much stuff you need to get done? Well, that’s not going to help you relax very much. TCM encourages mindful resting, like meditation or journaling.
Taking small rests throughout the day is an Ayurvedic trick to help you maintain your energy. Try taking regular 5-10 minute breaks throughout the day to do breathing exercises. This will infuse you with pranic energy and power you up so you can tackle your tasks.
The Early Bird Gets The Worm
If you’re tired all the time, getting out of bed a few hours early might seem like the absolute last thing you want to do. But according to Ayurveda, waking up 20 minutes before the sun comes up is a surefire way to energize your day. That’s when vata energy, which is related to movement and vitality, is strongest. Plus, when you give yourself more time to get ready in the morning, you won’t be so rushed and stressed. Too much stress activates our fight-or-flight response which can burn up a lot of energy and make you tired.
Caffeine and energy drinks might be quick and convenient ways to get a jolt of energy, but just a few hours later you’ll start to crash and feel worse than you did before. So instead of reaching for a cup of joe, try one of these 4 tips from eastern medicine to get your energy levels back up.