If you're feeling tired, a bit sluggish, maybe a little low and you're wondering how to boost your energy? Then you've come to the right place. We all go through periods where we don't quite feel our perky best. But don't despair, you can get your mojo back by factoring some all-natural energy boosters into your daily routine.
We spoke to Nathalie Streng, founder of Amsterdam's The Cold Pressed Juicery, to share some of her mood-boosting advice, alongside some tried and true tricks The Beauty Editor team do when we're not feeling ourselves. Keep reading for 6 ways to boost your energy in no time.
1) Get Moving
Exercising may seem like the last thing you want to do when you're lacking in energy but the combination of getting outside and moving will help rev up your circulation and boost your mood.
"I practice yoga regularly here in Amsterdam, I ride my bike everywhere I go and I enjoy Rocycle spin classes a couple of times a week," says Nathalie. "By working out, the brain releases endorphins. Going for a run or to an intense spin session you experience that “runner's” high, it's lovely and keeps you on fire all day."
2) Stick on Some Tunes
Really can't face the day? Put together a playlist of your favourite uplifting songs. You know, the ones that just make you want to sing along and dance about. So why does some music make us feel so good? Neuroscientists Anne Blood and Robert Zatorre carried out a study in 2001 at McGill University in Montreal to find out. They looked at what was happening in the brain when people listened to music. The limbic and paralimbic regions were activated, triggering a dopamine release, which is the same chemical that is triggered by tasty food, sex and addictive drugs. So, next time you're feeling a little deflated pop on your favourite tunes and let your brain do the rest.
3) Drink Matcha
Matcha has so many wonderful health benefits but Nathalie looks to it for an energy boost. "Matcha has about 60 mg of caffeine per cup compared to coffee’s 95 mg, so you’ll get a boost without experiencing the crash. In addition to its manageable caffeine content, matcha also contains L-theanine, an amino acid that has been proven to provide calm, steady alertness. So, not only will you get an energy boost but improved focus too!"
4) Jump in the Shower
There are few things quite as energising as a shower, especially if you can handle a cold one. Dry body brush first to boost circulation, then hop under the flowing water and lather up with some Plant Apothecary Wake Up Bodywash, €22. It contains organic essential oils of rosemary and lemongrass, which aromatherapists have traditionally used to stimulate and revive the mind and body.
Plant Apothecary Wake Up Bodywash, €22
5) Swap Sweets for a Smoothie
"Naturally, I love to get energy from the beautiful, nutrient-dense foods I eat," Nathalie tells us. "And I always try to include natural energy boosters like cacao, chia and algae in my diet."
The easiest way to factor the following energising foods into your diet is via a healthy smoothie. A nourishing, nutrient-rich treat like a smoothie is far better for you than empty calories like sweets or crisps.
Raw Cacao: "We’re used to getting our energy from a bean, right? Not kidney or cannellini, but coffee beans. And while coffee is certainly a stimulant, another bean, cacao, is actually the fantastic, natural energy booster I reach for," says Nathalie. "Raw cacao increases energy levels by triggering the release of endorphins, which enhances your mood and gives mental energy and improves blood flow to the brain. Cacao is also rich in magnesium, which is important for combatting fatigue, irritability and anxiety."
Chia: "Though you may not expect it, chia seeds contain a lot of fat but don’t worry, it’s the good kind!" Nathalie assures us. "In fact, their fat content is why they offer people a great source of energy. Studies have shown that eating chia seeds can even enhance exercise performance in the same way a sports drink would, without the sugar. There’s a reason people have been consuming them for centuries!"
Algae: "If you take a look at the colour of algae like spirulina or chlorella, it will come as no surprise that both are chock full of chlorophyll. But what you might not know is that chlorophyll gives us a powerful natural dose of what we’re all looking for: energy!" says Nathalie. "Adding a few drops of liquid chlorophyll or asking for an extra shot of chlorella and spirulina in your smoothie will give you that energy boost you were looking for."
6) Take a Power Nap
You might think going to sleep is the exact opposite to what you should do to boost energy fast, but as long as you limit your snooze to 10-20 minutes you'll wake up feeling revitalised and not groggy. According to the American Sleep Association, we shouldn't sleep for more than 30 minutes in the day and, if you want to make it a regular thing, ensure you stick to a consistent time in the day to nap, that way it should boost your energy without affecting your nighttime sleep pattern.