How to combat exhaustion with your nutrition and lifestyle

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In today's fast-paced world, it's easy to become overwhelmed and exhausted. Whether it's due to long work hours, a busy schedule, or the stresses of daily life, fatigue can be a common experience for many of us. However, there are several ways to combat exhaustion, and some of the most effective are through nutrition and lifestyle changes. Here are seven ways you to combat exhaustion…

Prioritise sleep
One of the most important ways to combat exhaustion is to prioritise sleep. This may sound obvious and simple but it can easily get forgotten when life gets busy. When we sleep, our bodies recharge and repair themselves, allowing us to wake up feeling refreshed and energised. To ensure that you're getting enough sleep, try to establish a regular sleep schedule and stick to it. Aim for seven to eight hours of sleep each night, and try to avoid caffeine and alcohol before bedtime.

Eat well and regularly
Eating a balanced diet rich in nutrient-dense foods is crucial for maintaining energy levels throughout the day. Focus on incorporating a variety of whole foods into your diet, including whole foods that are high in vitamins and minerals, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, nuts, and seeds. These foods provide essential nutrients that support energy production and help combat fatigue.
Skipping meals or going long periods without eating can cause blood sugar levels to drop, leading to fatigue and exhaustion. To combat this, aim to eat regularly throughout the day, with balanced meals and snacks every 3-4 hours. Incorporate protein, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates into each meal to help regulate blood sugar levels and maintain energy throughout the day.

Incorporate energy-boosting nutrients
Certain nutrients can help boost energy levels and combat exhaustion. Consider incorporating foods that are high in B vitamins, iron, magnesium, CoQ10, and omega-3 fatty acids are some examples of nutrients that play a critical role in energy production and can be found in foods such as whole grains, lean meats, fatty fish, nuts and seeds, and dark, leafy greens.

Stay hydrated
Dehydration can cause fatigue and exhaustion, so it's essential to stay hydrated throughout the day. Aim for at least eight glasses of water per day, and consider incorporating hydrating foods into your diet, such as watermelon, cucumber, and leafy greens.

Exercise regularly
Exercise is a great way to combat exhaustion, as it releases endorphins that can boost your mood and energy levels. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise each day, such as brisk walking, jogging, or cycling. If you're new to exercise, start slowly and gradually increase the intensity over time.

Limit alcohol and caffeine
Alcohol and caffeine can disrupt sleep patterns and cause fatigue, so it's important to consume them in moderation. Limit alcohol intake to one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men, and aim to consume no more than 400mg of caffeine per day, and ideally drink it in the morning or at least 12 hours before you plan to sleep.

Practice Stress-Reduction Techniques
Stress is a major contributor to exhaustion, so practising stress-reduction techniques can be incredibly helpful. Try incorporating mindfulness practices, such as meditation or deep breathing exercises, into your daily routine. Consider scheduling regular self-care activities, such as massages, yoga classes, or relaxing baths, to help you unwind and recharge.

Exhaustion is a common experience that can easily take a toll on our physical and mental health. While there are several ways to combat exhaustion, making changes to our nutrition and lifestyle habits can be one of the most effective. Prioritising sleep, eating a balanced diet rich in nutrient-dense foods, staying hydrated, exercising regularly, limiting alcohol and caffeine, and practising stress-reduction techniques are all crucial in maintaining energy levels and combating fatigue. By making these small but significant changes, you can improve your overall quality of life and take control of your energy levels. Remember, self-care is essential, and by prioritising your health and well-being, you can achieve greater productivity, happiness, and success in all areas of your life.

Written by Harriet Lidgard
Nutritionist (BSc) & Health Coach

**At Free Soul, your wellbeing is our priority, and although we pride ourselves on our expertise in women's health and wellbeing, it is important to acknowledge the individuality of each person. Features published by Free Soul are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent any disease, or replace the advice of your GP. We always recommend consulting with a healthcare provider if you encounter any health concerns, and we’ll always be here to support you so you’re never alone on your journey.