close ad

27 Ways to Boost Your Energy

Get up and go with these fatigue-fighting strategies. Try a tip a day and in no time you'll be full speed ahead.
Girl jumping on beach with energy
Enlarge Image
By Tom Corbett

See the light: Crack the curtains before bedtime to let the sun shine in when it rises, and open the blinds as soon as your alarm goes off. Daylight signals your biological clock to stop producing melatonin, the hormone that makes you sleepy, says Judith Wurtman, Ph.D., co-author of The Serotonin Solution (Ballantine). If your family's schedule requires you to get up when it's still dark, consider buying an alarm clock like Philips Wake-Up Light, which simulates dawn by gradually lightening the room.

Look at something bright: Warm tones like red, orange and yellow remind you of the sun, evoking feelings of alertness, says Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. Choose a vibrantly colored alarm clock or slip on a pair of yellow socks—even drinking a glass of orange juice will give you a lift.

Chill out: End your shower with a blast of cold water. According to celebrity trainer Jim Karas, co-author of The 7-Day Energy Surge (Rodale), skin is much more receptive to cold than heat. "I call it my personal electric shock," says Karas.

Use a body lotion with jasmine: The floral scent increases your beta brain waves and makes you feel awake, says Alan Hirsch, M.D., founder and neurological director of the Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation in Chicago.

Rise and shine: Try to get outside within 15 minutes of waking for a 20-minute walk. Face east for the strongest sunlight, suggests Wurtman. If possible, arrange your kitchen so the table is near a window to shed some light on your daily breakfast routine. On weekends read on your porch.

Become a cereal monogamist: People who ate a high-fiber cereal in the morning showed a 10% reduction in fatigue, as well as lower rates of depression and better cognitive skills, according to a study in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition. Soluble fiber is a prebiotic that feeds friendly bacteria in your gut, expelling toxins from your body and helping you absorb more nutrients. Look for a cereal with at least 10g of fiber per serving, like Kashi GoLean.

Caffeinate right: Pounding too much java in the early hours can give you a temporary lift followed by the feeling that you need a nap. For staying power, sip your coffee throughout the morning. The U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine found that mini servings of caffeine (8 ounces of coffee or less over the span of a few hours) keep you awake longer than one jumbo serving.

Related Topics in Emotional Health