Low on energy? Who isn’t? In this fast-paced hectic world, many of us are burning the candle at both ends and working insane hours.
It’s really important that you adjust your life to include plenty of sleep, relaxing activities and time to eat nutritiously. As you work towards a healthier lifestyle, some of the following nutrients and herbal supplements may be helpful in increasing your energy levels.
Very quickly, do you know how energy is produced? We produce energy via little organs called mitochondria located inside our cells.
Our bodies are composed of trillions of cells and each cell as numerous mitochondria. The foods we eat provide the fuel and fire to keep the mitochondria producing energy called ATP.
So, all of the following nutrients and herbal supplements aid in some aspect of this energy production process. Interesting fact I thought I’d share!
Carnitine can be thought of as the delivery truck for fatty acids and amino acids that are essential for mitochondrial energy production.
Carnitine carries these essential components to the mitochondria and upon leaving; it takes the waste and toxins formed when during energy production.
CoQ is an essential component of energy production, especially in heart tissue. Many studies have shown that CoQ deficiency is prevalent in heart diseases.
Oddly enough, drugs used to lower cholesterol shut down the body’s production of CoQ. Sounds like cutting one’s nose off to spite the face!
It’s important for people taking drugs such as Mevator, Lipitor and Zovacor for high cholesterol supplement their diets with CoQ for optimal energy production, especially for heart tissue.
Ashwaganda is an herb long used in Ayurvedic medicine to increase stamina as well as immunity and sexual energy.
The theory behind this is that it has a positive effect on the central nervous system. It is one of the oldest known elixirs for low energy levels.
Codonopsis is used in Chinese medicine for boosting energy levels. It strengthens immunity as well as spleen function. It also improves digestion, which means you are more likely to absorb all sorts of energy boosting nutrients. As well, it can improve sleep quality!
To understand garlic’s ability to boost energy, let me remind you of common diabetic symptoms: fatigue!
Many patients recently diagnosed with diabetes can tell you how tired they began to feel and this is often the driving factor that brings them to their healthcare provider.
Garlic has a substance in it that helps control blood sugar levels by carrying away substances that would normally bind to insulin and deactivate it.
This means that insulin becomes more available to perform its job of removing blood sugar from the blood vessels. Garlic also has a positive effect on the pancreas in improving insulin production and release.
Ginkgo biloba improves circulation, especially at the final exchange area in the capillaries.
This improves oxygen transport and waste removal and thus creates a situation where mitochondria are getting loads of oxygen necessary for energy production AND they are less susceptible to toxic build up as a result of poor waste removal.
Another great thing about ginkgo is its ability to protect our nerve cells, which improves cognitive function. In other words, gingko helps provide energy as well as mental focus, clarity and alertness.
Ginseng has long been used as a powerful energy enhancer that provides energy without the jitters associated with caffeine, although ginseng does affect every person differently and you should discontinue use if you feel anxious or nervous.
It’s primary ability to rejuvenate stems from its role in protein synthesis.
It also helps reduce bad cholesterol and boost good cholesterol. It also affects hormone production and thereby improves balance.
You may find ginseng listed as either Panax or Siberian. Both are very good, although Panax may be a bit stronger whereas Siberian ginseng has been noted to improve response to stress.
The berry of the schizandra plant is often used in tonics to boost energy and stamina and has been widely used in China, Korea and Russia.
The potential for this as an energy supplement lies in its ability to improve adrenal function and interestingly, reduce eye fatigue.