Are you tired of feeling drained and lacking the energy to tackle your daily life? If so, it's time to break free from the grips of fatigue and discover the power of supplements to increase energy.
Alternatively, doing some exercise can also do the trick. This may sound counter-intuitive, but doing physical exercise can actually give you more energy and also help you sleep better (1).
So can eating a healthy diet… But, sometimes, eating a healthy diet is not always possible, in which case, there are a few supplements available that can help give you an energy boost to get you through the day.
In this article, we unveil the top 5 energizing supplements that can breathe new life into your body and mind.
1. Caffeine – The Energizing Elixir
It is common for people to reach for a cup of strong coffee to get them going in the morning or boost them through the afternoon slump. This is because it contains caffeine, which is a natural stimulant that can boost energy levels and improve mental alertness.
Caffeine is also in tea, energy drinks, and supplements. Adenosine is a neurotransmitter that increases as the day goes on and makes us feel tired and ready for sleep. Caffeine gives us more energy by blocking adenosine. This makes us feel less tired and more alert (2).
It can also increase the production of other neurotransmitters, such as dopamine and norepinephrine, which can improve mood and cognitive function. The effect of caffeine on dopamine is why we become addicted to caffeine (3).
Coffee or a Supplement? – Is Coffee Good or Bad for Health?
If you want to know if it's better to get caffeine from coffee or a supplement, the answer depends on your preferences and the situation. Coffee contains other compounds that can provide additional benefits, such as antioxidants (4).
However, it can also have negative effects. These include causing anxiety, heart palpitations, or disrupting sleep (5). On the other hand, supplements can provide more precise dosing. Additionally, they are often formulated with other ingredients that can increase the effects of caffeine or reduce potential side effects.
It's important to note that caffeine affects everyone differently. Additionally, some people may be more sensitive to its effects than others. You can get used to caffeine over time (3), which makes it less effective at giving you energy and keeping you awake.
Caffeine is best used in moderation, and you should keep an eye on how it affects your body and health as a whole.
2. Iron – Fueling Your Energy Reserves
Iron is important for keeping us energetic. This is because iron is necessary for the production of hemoglobin. Hemoglobin carries energy giving oxygen in the blood and delivers it to every cell in the body. Low iron levels can lead to anaemia and fatigue and make it difficult to concentrate.
If you are feeling sluggish on a regular basis, it may be a sign that you need this supplement. Women in particular, may need to have their iron levels checked, as iron can be lost, especially if menstruation is particularly heavy. This can lead to anaemia, fatigue, weakness, and a lack of energy (6). If anaemia goes untreated, it can lead to pica (eating non-food items) (7), swollen lips (cheilitis), restless legs, and hair loss. (6).
Taking Iron Supplements
If you have been diagnosed with iron deficiency anaemia, your doctor may recommend eating foods high in iron or taking an iron supplement. These supplements can help increase your iron levels and improve your energy levels.
But beware, iron supplements can cause side effects such as constipation, stomach upset, and nausea. To reduce these side effects, it is better to find an one that is gentle and take iron supplements when eating.
Another way to reduce these side effects is to start with a low dose and gradually increase it so that you can see how well you tolerate it (8).
Iron supplements can affect how well drugs such as antibiotics and those used to treat Parkinson's disease or seizures work. Therefore, it is best to leave a few hours between taking medication and iron supplements.
Orange juice is great to drink when taking iron supplements because vitamin C can help your body absorb the iron more easily. (8).
With regard to food, it is a good idea to boost your iron intake to keep your energy levels up. You can achieve this by eating plenty of leafy vegetables, red meat, fish, seafood, beans, and legumes.
3. B Vitamins – Energize Your Body from Within
B vitamins are essential nutrients that play a crucial role in turning food into adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which is a form of energy.
There are eight B vitamins. These include:
- Thiamine, known as vitamin B1
- Riboflavin, known as B2
- Niacin, known as vitamin B3
- Pantothenic acid, known as vitamin B5
- Pyridoxine, known as vitamin B6
- Biotin, known as vitamin B7 and
- Folate, known as vitamin B9
These B vitamins all work to help your body get energy from food.
When we eat food the carbohydrates, fats, and proteins are broken down into simpler compounds. These compounds are glucose, fatty acids, and amino acids. B vitamins are involved in various reactions that help convert these compounds into energy (10).
Vitamin B12 – The Supercharger for Energy Levels
Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is an essential vitamin. It plays an important role in the production of red blood cells and DNA, as well as the proper functioning of the nervous system. Not getting enough vitamin B12 can lead to anaemia, fatigue, weakness, and decreased energy levels.
Vitamin B12 is mostly found in animal products, such as meat, fish, and dairy. So, it can be tricky for vegetarians and vegans to get enough. In these cases, a vitamin B12 supplement is helpful to increase energy levels and improve overall health.
However, it is important to note that vitamin B12 supplements are not a magical cure for low energy levels. This is because some people, no matter how much vitamin B12 they take in through diet or supplements, cannot absorb it. In which case, it may be necessary to have the vitamin injected directly into your bloodstream on a regular basis. This has to be done by a medical practitioner (11).
4. Coenzyme Q10 – Powering Up Your Cellular Energy
Coenzyme Q10, also known as CoQ10, is found in every cell in your body. It is important to produce energy in the form of ATP. While the body can produce CoQ10 on its own, the amounts produced can decrease as we age. Some medications and some health conditions can also reduce the amount of CoQ10 that our body produces. When this happens, taking a CoQ10 supplement can help increase energy levels (12).
CoQ10 supplements should not be taken if you are on medication for cancer, high blood pressure, or blood thinning. In addition to its role in energy production, CoQ10 also has antioxidant properties, which can help protect cells from oxidative damage and may help improve overall energy levels and reduce fatigue (13).
5. Rhodiola Rosea – Nature's Energy-Boosting Wonder
Rhodiola rosea is another supplement that can help improve energy levels and reduce fatigue (14). This is due to the compounds in Rhodiola rosea called rosavin and salidroside. They are believed to have adaptogenic properties. This means that they help your body adapt to stress and improve physical and mental performance (15).
Rhodiola rosea can also increase the production of serotonin and dopamine, known as the “feel good” neurotransmitters (16). Although these neurotransmitters do not increase energy, when you feel good, you can feel more energized.
Rhodiola rosea can interact with certain medications, so it should not be taken alongside blood thinning, anti-inflammatory, or multiple sclerosis drugs (17). Therefore, it is good advice to speak with a healthcare provider before taking Rhodiola rosea supplements, especially if you are taking any medications or have any underlying health conditions.
Before You Go
In conclusion, discovering the top supplements to increase energy can be a game-changer in overcoming fatigue and revitalizing your life. From the energizing elixir of caffeine to the essential role of iron in fueling your energy reserves, these supplements offer promising solutions.
B vitamins work from within to power up your body's energy production, while vitamin B12 acts as a supercharger for energy levels. Coenzyme Q10 plays a vital role in powering up cellular energy, while Rhodiola rosea serves as nature's energy-boosting wonder. Incorporating these supplements into your daily routine can provide a much-needed energy boost.
Yet, it is essential to remember that individual responses to supplements may vary, and it's always wise to consult with your healthcare professional if you consistently experience a lack of energy or frequent fatigue.
Take the first step towards renewed energy and zest for life by exploring these supplements, but always prioritize your overall well-being. Listen to your body, seek professional advice, and make informed decisions that align with your health goals. With the right approach and the assistance of these energy-boosting supplements, you can embark on a journey toward a more vibrant and energetic lifestyle.
- Exercise: 7 benefits of regular physical activity https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/exercise/art-20048389
- Arousal Effect of Caffeine Depends on Adenosine A2A Receptors in the Shell of the Nucleus Accumbens https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3153505/
- Caffeine: It’s a Drink, It’s a Dessert, It’s a Drug https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/1-2-3-adhd/201807/caffeine-it-s-drink-it-s-dessert-it-s-drug
- Antioxidant and Antiradical Activity of Coffee https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4665516/
- How caffeine affects your body https://www.bupa.co.uk/newsroom/ourviews/how-caffeine-affects-body
- Iron Deficiency in Menstruating Adult Women: Much More than Anemia https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7784796/
- Pica in iron deficiency: a case series https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2850349/
- Taking iron supplements https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/007478.htm
- 52 Foods High In Iron https://health.clevelandclinic.org/how-to-add-more-iron-to-your-diet/
- B Vitamins and the Brain: Mechanisms, Dose and Efficacy—A Review https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4772032/
- Vitamin B12 https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/vitamin-b12/
- Coenzyme Q10: The essential nutrient https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3178961/
- Coenzyme Q10 https://www.mountsinai.org/health-library/supplement/coenzyme-q10
- The impact of dietary supplement NT-020 with Rhodiola rosea on energy, fatigue, and perceived exertion https://ffhdj.com/index.php/ffhd/article/view/656
- Rhodiola rosea https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/neuroscience/rhodiola-rosea
- The Health Benefits of Rhodiola https://www.verywellmind.com/how-is-rhodiola-rosea-used-to-treat-anxiety-3024972
- Rhodiola https://www.msdmanuals.com/en-gb/home/special-subjects/dietary-supplements-and-vitamins/rhodiola