Since my practice is focussed on working with women who experience excessive fatigue, exhaustion and feel like they have no energy at the end of the day they often ask me if I can just give them a pill to become energizer bunnies?
Before I consider any supplementation, I review the factors involved in the quality of their energy levels. Sleep, Exercise, Water intake, Stress levels and very importantly Diet are some of the fundamentals that I evaluate during a consultation.
There are of course times when the body needs extra supplementation to boost energy levels especially since our foods today are not as nutrient dense as 100 years ago.
Here are my top 2 nutrients for boosting energy, which I recommend obtaining primarily from food sources first and secondary from supplementation, if needed.
1. Vitamin B’s
The B vitamins consisting of BI, B2, B3, B5, B6, B12 are essential for the body. They are involved in energy production, support the digestive system, and utilize food for energy. They are also involved in preventing anxiety and depression, skin problems, nerve disorders, hypoglycemia, irritability, worsening allergy symptoms, cardiovascular health and the list goes on.
Some of the B vitamins are produced by intestinal bacteria, so a microbiome imbalance in the gut can also lead to this deficiency.
My primary recommendation is to ensure that foods high in B Vitamins are being consumed: Chicken, Turkey, Eggs, Lentils, Avocado, Sweet Potato, Salmon, Beef and Bananas are some good examples.
Sometimes however supplementation is required, in which case a good quality Vitamin B Complex may be taken.
There are many good brands on the market e.g. AOR, NFH, CanPrev and more that are available at Health Foods Stores (and no I am not affiliated with these brands in anyway). Most good quality B vitamins will come with added minerals which is a bonus.
Magnesium is a mineral that is involved in over 300 enzyme reactions in the body so its no surprise that it plays a role in Energy production too. Infact our energy making molecule ATP is bound to Magnesium so a deficiency in this mineral, (which is actually very common) can lead to low energy.
In addition, Magnesium is needed for teeth and bones, is a muscle relaxant and prevents coronary artery spasms. It also reduces high blood pressure, stress, anxiety and insomnia.
Good levels of Magnesium can be found in Oat bran, Brown rice, Almonds, Hazelnuts, Lima Beans, Spinach, Swiss Chard and Okra.
There are many types of Magnesium supplements available, the most popular one is Magnesium Glycinate. Good brands include CanPrev, AOR and Metagenics.
Food sources are higher in beneficial nutrients when they are Organic or at least Non-GMO, low in pesticides and where possible locally grown.
Health Disclaimer: Always consult your primary healthcare practitioner before using any new supplements.