There are boosters of energy, and there are busters of energy. Today we’re going over the boosters.
Specific nutrients can boost your energy level in the short term, but also in the long term. The best part about these boosters is that they also happen to be delicious!
Everyone knows that the caffeine in coffee and tea provides a short term boost in alertness. The downside of coffee’s upside is that your body can build up a tolerance over time. In other words, if you perk more cups per day, your body will perk up less and less to that same amount. The best coffee is the one without added sugars. Also, be careful in the afternoons, because it can contribute to insomnia. Sleep deprivation will deprive you of the energy boost you were looking for by taking the coffee in the first place!
Key Minerals: Magnesium and Iron
These two minerals are active in more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body – like breaking down glucose for energy, and carrying oxygen to throughout the body! The nutrition research is clear: the absence of these two minerals leads to fatigue, and their addition can boost energy levels. A deficiency can lead to fatigue, dizziness, hair loss, shortness of breath, weakness, pale color, headaches, anxiety, restless leg syndrome, and more.
Foods high in iron are here.
Foods high in magnesium are here.
Another Source of Iron
It is good to introduce healthy dietary changes to include more iron-rich foods, but another easy, effective way to increase your iron levels is to use cast iron cookware.
Several studies have shown that iron can be released into foods that are cooked in iron cookware. One found that the iron content of foods cooked in iron pots/pans increase by 16.2 percent compared to those cooked in other types of pots. Another huge benefit is that they are inexpensive and with very simple care will last a lifetime!
It may sound too good to be true, but cocoa can increase your energy levels in the long term through the specific kind of antioxidants most abundant in cocoa: catechins and epicatechins. These two do two very important things to increase your muscles’ ability to create more energy for you to use. They increase the amount of nutrients your muscles have to work with, and also increase the micromolecular organelles that produce the energy itself.
These two effects help give you more energy through the day. How much more? According to one study, cocoa epicatechins alone produce a 30% increase in fatigue resistance and a 30% increase in new blood supply. However, the increase in energy that you get from combining cocoa epicatechins with exercise amounts to a boost of 50%! In layman’s terms, that’s a huge increase in your ability to complete your exercises and to go through a normal day with increased energy.
How long will it take for these changes to occur? It took 2 weeks for experimental animals to see a 30% increase in fatigue resistance. In a separate study, it took 4 weeks to see increased capillaries and mitochondria. And subjects with type 2 diabetes who were administered 100 milligrams of epicatechins per day for 3 months showed a significant increase in mitochondria. In fact, before taking the epicatechins, their energy-producing mitochondria had all but withered away. It was only with the addition of the high-cocoa chocolate that their mitochondria were restored.