INSIDE: Discover 15 easy health and wellness tips that will give you the energy you need to accomplish your tasks with gusto. You can use these tips immediately to get an instant energy boost, and you can use them over time to enjoy sustained energy.
You know the drill…
You’re fed up with how run down you feel and you think to yourself, “That’s it! I’m gonna start eating better this week.” Or maybe it’s exercising, or drinking more water, or getting more sleep, etc.
And it’s great because inspiration has hit you.
But, it’s not great because as quick as the inspiration comes, it’s gone.
Because reality hits just a moment after inspiration hits, and the reality is, it’s harder to make those healthy changes.
After all, you’re too busy to cook a home-cooked meal full of nutrition. You’re too tired to care if you’re drinking the right amount of water. And finding time and energy to exercise is just comical.
If you can relate, you need my Easy Health and Wellness Tips For More Energy Now.
Now, you’ll have quick, actionable steps you can take when you feel inspired to engage in healthier habits, and since all of these tips provide you with easy ways to have more energy, you’ll actually want to do them.
As you take one of these steps, you’ll set yourself up to take the next step and the next until you’re just naturally living a healthier lifestyle, enjoying more energy, and feeling fantastic!
So choose any of these health and wellness tips as they strike your fancy, and simply start with one a day…
Use As, What & When to Eat Mindfully
Mindful eating has kind of become a buzzword lately, but there is tons of merit to it. To me, mindful eating means three things: 1) being mindful as you eat, 2) being mindful of what you eat, and 3) being mindful of when you eat – choose one at a time to keep it simple and easy. Let’s break these down…
Being Mindful As You Eat – This means that you take notice to the act of eating while you eat. While this may sound silly, the truth of the matter is, most of us eat super quickly and we are often engaged in another activity while we eat, so we don’t even pay much attention to the actual process.
Being mindful as you eat means that you play an active role in eating – you might put more care into how much food you put on your fork, cut up your food with more grace, chew longer, and certainly linger on the sensation of how good it tastes. It also means slowing down so that you can really take in the process.
Being Mindful of What You Eat – Of course it is important to be mindful of what you eat. That’s old news. But when you are eating to gain more energy, it’s especially true. That’s because there are certain foods that will boost your energy and there are foods that will absolutely destroy your energy.
While I will probably write an entire post about this subject at a later date, I want to at least give you some quick, actionable tips about what to eat for energy. (I provide a ton of info about what to eat and what not to eat in my Holistic Eating E-Course as well.)
The foods that will give you the most energy are:
- Fresh Vegetables and Fruits (especially organic)
- Nuts and Seeds
- Steel Cut Oatmeal
- Green Smoothies
The foods that will deplete you of energy are:
- Coffee (while it gives you a quick energy boost, it is a stimulant, which leads to feeling tired after you “come down”)
- Fatty Foods
- Highly Processed Foods
Here’s an interesting take on what to eat for energy – you could start with eating foods that fight insomnia. Getting better sleep is sure to boost your energy.
Being Mindful of When You Eat – It’s also important to be mindful of when we eat, and particularly the types of foods we eat at certain times. Avoid eating foods that make you tired during the day, and eat healthy versions of the foods that naturally make you sleepy at night (cherries, yogurt, bananas, whole grain cereals).
Sprinkle on the Nutrients
My favorite health and wellness tip for getting a burst of energy is to add herbs and spices to my food. Why?
- It makes what I am eating pop with flavor.
- It is much healthier than adding a ton of salt.
- Herbs and spices are loaded with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that power the body up with energy.
- Plus, many herbs and spices have antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, which help the body function optimally.
Here are some examples of how to create quick meals and snacks with herbs and spices:
- Cook a yam in the microwave for 3 minutes, cut open, splash with olive oil, and sprinkle rosemary on top – so yummy!
- Cook up some quick Spaghetti Bolognese by cooking some rotini pasta, cooking some grass-fed meet in a pan with olive oil and lots of chopped garlic (I like to buy the garlic already chopped because it’s so easy. Just make sure it’s not loaded with additives. I like this brand), and then mixing it together with a jar of sauce. All the garlic gives it a great taste.
- Sprinkle cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla on French toast – yum! Use whole grain bread of course.
- Create your own salad dressing by mixing olive oil, balsamic vinegar, water and your favorite Italian herbs. It tastes better than store bought dressing and doesn’t contain any of the unhealthy additives.
And if you aren’t sure what herbs and spices go with what, here’s a great article to help.
Invite Veggies to Everything
What does that mean? It means toss veggies in everything. I don’t mean just eat lots of vegetables. What I am referring to here is adding vegetables into all kinds of foods so you get a bigger energy bang for your buck. Here are some ways you can do this:
- Add shredded carrots or zucchini into meatloaf or burgers.
- Add tomatoes and onions to chicken quesadillas.
- Add shredded veggies to spaghetti and meat sauce.
- Add asparagus to eggs.
- Add butternut squash to your pancakes.
- Add spinach or kale to your smoothies.
- Don’t have time? – Purchase pasta that is made with veggies.
Here are some great cookbooks to help you incorporate more veggies into your food:
- Double Delicious: Good, Simple Food For Busy, Complicated Lives
- The Sneaky Chef: Simple Strategies For Hiding Healthy Foods in Kids’ Favorite Meals
Hydrate With the Right Stuff
Unless you live in a third world country, this is one of the easiest health and wellness tips I could offer. If you aren’t already drinking much water, this is a simple way to gain more energy starting now. If you are drinking water, but not enough, changing how much you drink will give you a boost.
I’m not just talking about drinking fluids in general – I am talking about drinking actual water – filtered water is best. If you tend to drink a lot of soda, juice, coffee or even milk, start to switch to water for one drink a day, then two drinks a day, and so on until you are drinking mostly water.
Why Water is Better Than All Other Contenders
Soda – Soda is loaded with sugar, calories, caffeine and toxic chemicals (and diet soda is actually even worse because of the artificial sweeteners in it). Soda doesn’t even hydrate the body, and the caffeine in it actually contributes to dehydration. It contributes to weight gain, dental issues and metabolic diseases.
Juice – Only 100% juice can be considered to have health benefits, but even that has tons of calories in it, so it should be limited to one glass per day. Juice is high on the glycemic index, which can lead to type 2 diabetes, and it can do a number on your teeth as well. While it does contain vitamins and minerals, it is always better to get those nutrients from the actual fruit, since it contains more fiber and has a lower glycemic index.
Milk – Society has us believing that milk is healthy and almost essential, but it is quite the opposite. For starters, unless you are drinking organic milk, you are consuming tons of hormones and antibiotics. It also creates mucus, gas and acne. Plus, there is growing evidence that says that milk actually depletes calcium from your bones, not the other way around.
Coffee – There are conflicting studies when it comes to coffee, so while it could have health benefits, it is still a stimulant. That means it will give you a boost, which will soon follow with a drop in energy. It is also a diuretic, so it contributes to fluid loss instead of hydrating the body. Consider drinking one cup in the morning, but limiting it to that.
Water – Water contains no calories, no sugar and no toxic chemicals. It hydrates the body, flushes toxins from the body, helps with weight management and actually promotes dental health. As long as you are drinking filtered water (from a reputable filtering source), it’s always the best beverage choice.
BONUS: Splash some lemon juice into your water for an added bonus. According to Dr. Axe, lemon water aids in digestion and detoxification, provides lots of vitamin C, rejuvenates the skin, helps you lose weight, and boosts your energy and mood. Health Ambition offers several more benefits of lemons in their article as well.
Do Jumping Jacks Like a Kid Again
I know it takes energy to do something like jumping jacks, but when it comes to exercise, sometimes you need to abide by the saying, “fake it until you make it.” That’s because when we exercise, it gives us more energy.
You’ve probably heard that it is a bad idea to exercise too close to bedtime, and it’s because the burst of energy you get from exercising will make it difficult to wind down and fall asleep. You can use this to your advantage by doing little bouts of physical activity when you need a pick-me-up.
I particularly like jumping jacks because I can do them anywhere, they are easy, and they make me feel like a kid again. You can replace any other exercise if jumping jacks aren’t your thing – the important thing is to get your body moving.
How Exercise Gives You Energy
Exercise does the following, all of which help improve energy levels:
- Increases endorphin levels (which are hormones that give us a burst of energy)
- Improves circulation (good circulation carries oxygen throughout your body, which provides you with energy)
- Strengthens the heart muscle (which improves endurance)
- Improves sleep
- Improves mental focus (due to the boost in endorphins)
Rejuvenate Like a Cat
Stretching is another great way to get the body moving, but instead of providing a burst of physical energy to the body, it provides more of a feeling of rejuvenation (which is still a type of energy).
You’ve probably noticed it before as you stretched in bed before getting up – it just makes you feel good and ready to start your day, doesn’t it?
After sitting at a desk or driving in a car for long periods of time, take five minutes and stretch. Either do some yoga stretches or just find your own different ways to stretch the parts of your body that are craving a good stretch.
In fact, make a point to stretch for a couple minutes once every hour. You’ll be amazed at how much this health and wellness tip helps your energy level, not to mention how good it makes your body feel.
Get Off the Elevator
We’ve all gotten lazy to a point because we all look for the easiest, least strenuous route through life. For example, we take the elevator instead of the stairs, and we look for the closest parking spot.
It makes sense – I mean, who wants to make themselves work harder than they have to. But…
“A body in motion wants to stay in motion.”
And a body that isn’t in motion has a hard time moving.
Consider This: If we engage in more physical activity as a natural part of our lives, we will not have to set aside so much time and energy to exercise.
Find ways to interject more exercise into your normal routine. As your body experiences more exercise naturally throughout the day, it will reward you by naturally feeling more energetic throughout the day as well.
Some simple exercise ideas might include:
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator whenever the opportunity presents itself.
- Park farther away instead of as close as possible.
- Walk or bike instead of driving whenever you can.
- When watching TV, do some floor exercises or run on a treadmill.
- Look at house chores as exercise time, and do those activities with even more oomph.
- When your son asks you to play ball with him, say yes.
- If you work in an office, walk over to your coworker to discuss an issue instead of sending an email.
Actually Do That Health and Wellness Solution So Many People Rave About
What is this wellness solution I am talking about?
Why did I call the heading what I did? Because the benefits of meditation are all over the place – we hear about them on the news, in magazines, in books, all over the Internet, from famous people, etc.
But are we doing it?
For most of us, the answer is no.
This is true for me too. Meditation is a tough one for me even though I know how beneficial it is, but when I fall out of practice, I always find my way back to it because it makes such a huge difference in my life.
More energy is only one of the many benefits of meditation, but it’s a huge one. According to Forbes, meditation also reduces aging in the brain, increases compassion, reduces depression and anxiety, improves learning and concentration, and more.
If you are the type of person who has difficulty letting go of all of the thoughts swirling around in your head (Ahem, like me), then guided meditations are the way to go. It’s the easiest way I’ve found to meditate. I prefer to listen to guided meditations through headphones because it’s easier to block out all other sounds.
My next favorite way to meditate is to just listen to what I call “meditation music” through headphones, and to offer a question up to the Universe. Then I zone out to the music and let answers come to me. You’ll need to be open-minded about this so you can recognize the answers that come to you. This is a fun way to get creative solutions to an issue you are dealing with. Here is a great selection of meditation music to browse through.
Another type of meditation that I enjoy is mantra meditations. This is when you repeat a mantra over and over during your meditation. I like to listen to meditation music through headphones while I do this meditation. Examples of mantras might be “I am enough,” “I follow the way of love,” or “I allow and I trust.”
- You don’t have to meditate for hours to enjoy the benefits. Consistency is the key. So even if you can only get yourself to do it for 5 minutes at a time, do that every day.
- I prefer to meditate while seated with my eyes closed. Other people like to lie down, but I find that just makes me fall asleep. You can also meditate with your eyes open – for example, you can stare at a candle flame while you meditate.
- You’ll often see photos of people meditating while holding their thumbs and pointer or middle fingers together. I love doing this because it allows me to tune into my inner spirit since you can actually feel the energy you are made of between your fingers. You’ll need to make sure your fingers are touching very lightly in order to feel the energy, and I think it is easiest to feel it when I use my thumbs and pointer fingers.
Drink the Drink of the Health and Wellness Gods
What’s that drink? I don’t know, but if I were going to guess, I would say it would be green tea.
While water is the most important thing to drink, if you really want something else, green tea is the way to go. It’s naturally caffeinated, but it doesn’t have as much caffeine as coffee, so it will give you a boost without the shakes. Plus it is full of antioxidants, and you can drink it hot or cold.
You can make this health and wellness tip fun by mixing it up a bit with these green tea recipes:
Learn How to Breathe
Our breath literally gives us life, and it can give us a burst of energy when we need it to. When we allow our bodies to have the oxygen we need, we feel more alive.
The problem is that most of us don’t breathe right. We breathe shallowly from our chests, while we need to be breathing from deeper down in the abdomen.
The Right Way to Breathe
When you inhale, let the air come all the way down into your stomach. Watch your stomach fill up like a balloon. Then exhale, fully emptying your stomach.
As an exercise, try breathing in slowly to the count of three and then exhaling at the same pace to the count of three. This is a great practice to engage in during meditation or while you are lying in bed.
Your Nose Can Give You Energy
Aromatherapy is an easy way to change your mental state, whether it’s to feel more relaxed, more energetic, less stressed, more uplifted or to relieve pain.
In aromatherapy, essential oils are extracted from plants in concentrated form, providing a therapeutic liquid that engages the senses and promotes health in the body.
To have more energy now, peppermint, orange and lemon are great essential oil choices. You can diffuse them into the air with a diffuser, you can simply inhale them from the jar, you can apply them to your skin, you can wear a diffuser necklace, and you can use sprays and lotions.
What’s really fun is when you mix unscented lotions and creams with essential oils to make your own natural product creations.
Give Yourself a Massage
Yes, you can massage yourself, and it’s a health and wellness tip no one should be without!
It’s called Do-In and it is an ancient Chinese technique that stimulates the natural flow of energy in the body. It promotes overall well-being, but in a pinch, it can serve to perk you up.
There are many different Do-In exercises, and you can do them in a sequence or as a one-off depending on the result you are going for. It involves doing things like rubbing your hands together, pushing on pressure points, and pounding your chest with your fists (yes, like Tarzan).
Here’s a great list of simple Do-In massage techniques you can try on yourself.
Strike a Pose
The way we feel not only causes our demeanor; it’s also the other way around. The way we present ourselves has a huge impact on how we feel. For example, have you ever noticed that it is impossible to smile without feeling happy?
The way we sit and stand also affects the way we feel. For example, slouching makes you feel tired while sitting up straight instantly gives you a little bolt of energy. The same thing goes for standing – when you are hunched over, you feel more tired, but when you stand up tall, shoulders back, chin up, you feel more confident and more energized.
Have you read Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes (the woman who wrote Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal)? She has debilitating social anxiety – something I can really relate to – and in the book she refers to her Wonder Woman Stance as making a real impact on her confidence.
Tap the Stuck Energy Away
We are energetic beings who have energy pathways running throughout our bodies. When we experience negative emotions, stress, trauma, etc, those pathways can become blocked, which puts a strain on our physical energy levels.
There are many ways to release negative energy, such as acupuncture, acupressure, reflexology, shiatsu massage, and reiki.
My favorite method, however is Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), which you can do yourself in any place at any time. It’s a simple process of tapping on certain energy points in the body, which serves to release stuck energy.
Here’s a great book that helps you easily incorporate this practice into your everyday life.
After All Other Health and Wellness Tips Fail, Rekindle Your Dreams
There is nothing more energizing then having a dream to pursue. When we are passionate about a goal, we are gifted with the energy to pursue it. That’s why it is so important to feel inspired! It fuels you and helps you move forward in ways that would otherwise feel impossible.
If you have dreams that you have let go of, it’s time to call them back out.
If you could have anything you wanted, what would it be?
If you could do anything with your days, what would you do?
If you could wake up excited, what would be the reason?
Answer those questions and then make a plan to make your dream come true. Stop making excuses and start taking action. Being excited about a new goal is like adrenaline for the body, mind and spirit. It’s an energy that can’t be matched and that we all want to experience.
When all else fails with the health and wellness tips on this list, this is the tip I would leave you with, because a person who is inspired is a person who is fueled from within. Everything is easy when we have that fire inside of us, and it makes energy readily available to us.
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