Here are some common bad habits that can make you feel tired, plus simple lifestyle tweaks that will put the pep back in your step.
1. Not drinking enough water: Being even slightly dehydrated takes a toll on energy levels. Dehydration causes a reduction in blood volume which makes the blood thicker. This requires your heart to pump less efficiently, reducing the speed at which oxygen and nutrients reach your muscles and organs. Dehydration occurs when there is an excessive loss of body fluids, especially of water and electrolytes or not enough water taken in. When you start to feel thirsty, you body is already dehydrated.
2. Living on junk food: Foods loaded with sugar and simple carbs rank high on the glycemic index (GI), an indicator of how rapidly carbohydrates increase blood sugar. Constant blood sugar spikes followed by sharp drops cause fatigue over the course of the day, keep blood sugar steady by having a lean protein along with a whole grain at every meal. Good choices include chicken (baked, not fried) and brown rice, salmon and sweet potato, or salad with chicken and fruit.
3. You skip exercise when you’re tired: Skipping your workout to save energy actually works against you. Regular exercise boosts strength and endurance, helps make your cardiovascular system run more efficiently, and delivers oxygen and nutrients to your tissues.
4. Poor sleeping: Your sleep quality has a direct impact on how energetic you feel the next day. Even a small amount of sleep deprivation can harm your health and mood.
5. Not consuming enough iron: An iron deficiency can leave you feeling sluggish, irritable, weak, and unable to focus. It makes you tired because less oxygen travels to the muscles and cells, boost your iron intake to reduce your risk of anemia. Eat enough lean beef, kidney beans, tofu, eggs (including the yolk), dark green leafy vegetables, nuts, and peanut butter, and pair them with foods high in vitamin C (vitamin C improves iron absorption when eaten together).
6. Obesity: Obesity due to improper diet and a sedentary lifestyle can also affect your energy level and make you feel tired and exhausted throughout the day. Obesity itself also tends to increase the risk of reducing your physical activity level, especially in women. Moreover, obesity can result in sleep apnea, which causes restless sleep throughout the night and leads to sleepiness during the day. It also causes heavy snoring.
7. Excess Caffeine: Daily dose of coffee is good for the health but using caffeine improperly can seriously disrupt your sleep-wake cycle. Caffeine blocks adenosine, the byproduct of active cells that drives you to sleep as it accumulates, consuming caffeine even six hours prior to bedtime affects sleep, so cut yourself off by mid-afternoon.
8. Emotional stress: Emotional stress can take a huge toll on your energy levels, especially when stress progresses to the point of an anxiety disorder or a sleep-related problem.
9. Pregnancy: One of the first changes during pregnancy is a sudden change in your energy level. Feeling tired most of the time during the day is common during the first as well as third trimester. During the first trimester, hormonal changes are likely the cause of fatigue. Also, more energy is needed to build a life-support system for your baby. Plus, nausea and vomiting can further exhaust you. Tiredness and fatigue tend to go away during the second trimester, but will usually return in the third trimester.