Energy is vital to our health but a lot of us feel like we don’t have enough. As one of our most requested areas of interest, we thought we would dive into energy to explore just what it is and how you can boost yours.
What is energy?
So what is energy? Put simply, energy is the power generated in our cells that allows our body, from our muscles to organs and brain, to work. We are constantly producing it and without it, we wouldn’t be able to function. While we all ‘have’ energy, problems can arise when we feel we don’t have enough. That is, our body is not producing the amount we need to perform in our daily lives.
Let’s explore the ways in which we get our energy:
Energy from food
Food is our primary fuel source, providing much-needed nutrients to our body so that it may begin to produce energy. The energy potential of food is measured in calories and each individual will have a different caloric requirement based on a number of factors, like weight, body type and activity level. The macro and micronutrients that make up these calories are essential for our overall health, so a balanced diet optimised for your body type is your best bet for fuelling your body the right way.
Energy from Supplements
Supplementing with vitamins is the icing on the cake when it comes to consuming for energy and by making up any deficiencies will help you bulletproof your diet to keep you feeling great. Along with the other B vitamins, vitamin B12 is essential for transforming the food you eat into energy your cells can use. Other supplements like Ashwagandha are thought to increase energy by enhancing your bodies response to stress. In one study, people given Ashwagandha showed reductions in stress and anxiety and had almost 30% lower levels of stress hormone, cortisol. A great multivitamin can also help with deficiencies, optimising bodily function and energy production in the process. Are you lacking in energy? Take the Vitally questionnaire here to see which supplements could help you.
Energy and exercise
Next up is exercise. While exercise expends energy, it also boosts energy in multiple ways. It helps energy-producing mitochondria form in our muscle cells, increases our body’s oxygen carrying capacity, increases vital hormones related to mood, and guarantees a sound sleep! Conversely, a lack of exercise causes us to lose muscle cells, lowers mitochondria and makes our heart and lungs less efficient. If that’s not enough to make you jump out of your chair and run to your nearest gym, exercise also eases depression and reduces the risk of certain cancers. Try to fit some physical activity into your day and watch your energy levels and overall health grow.
Energy and sleep
Sleep is also essential for energy and can be divided into two major types – REM sleep and non-REM sleep. Non-REM sleep involves three stages, and is believed to be the time our body is able to repair itself, playing the greatest role in energy production, where REM sleep has been found to restore your mind and facilitate learning and memory. It’s safe to say sleep is essential! But just how much do we need? Check out or blog post on sleep here: https://vitally.co.nz/blogs/news/10-tips-for-a-good-night-s-sleep
Energy and stress
Managing stress is essential. While short-term stress can boost energy by raising heart rate and our stress hormones, long-term energy drains. The fast-pace of modern life can be a source of stress for many, so it is important we take steps to manage stress, or rather, re-frame how we view and respond to it. Practicing mindfulness, getting exercise and mastering breathing techniques are great fatigue-fighting ways to keep your cool and feel more energised as a result.
So there you have it! While this really only scrapes the surface, bettering your diet, sleep, exercise and stress response are great ways to keep those energy levels high so you feel fighting fit.