How often do you feel energized and vigorous during your workweek? The chances are that not that frequently as you'd like to. The National Sleep Foundation's 2020 survey confirms that most people have issues with energy levels. The survey has found that average adults feel tired and sleepy at least three days a week. And the reason for such fatigue isn't necessarily hidden in lack of sleep. You may feel exhausted due to an unhealthy lifestyle or a high workload that doesn't allow you to take a breath.
Still, poor diet and lack of nutrients in your body are among the top reasons for fatigue. You may find it hard to change your eating habits or make them more healthy in such cases. So what can you do to bring your energy back? Supplements are your effective and easy solution for reducing tiredness caused by a lack of nutrients. Let's uncover how micronutrients may affect your stamina and which supplements are the best for keeping it high!
Micronutrients and your energy: is there a link between them?
Aside from macronutrients like carbs, fats, and proteins, essential for your healthy nutrition and energy, some micronutrients affect your inner processes and define your wellbeing. Nutrients Journal study claims that vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients are indispensable parts of your body's metabolism and oxygen transport to all essential organs.
What's also important, some micronutrients are present in your cells. They affect the work of ATP molecules, which transform chemical energy got from the breakdown of food into the "fuel" for your cells and inner chemical processes. These ATP molecules have three roles:
- transporting essential chemicals across your cells
- helping you perform movements by doing a mechanical work
- activating metabolic reactions within your cells.
Lack of certain micronutrients can be a reason for poor ATP molecules' performance, decreasing the efficiency of energy metabolism. In other words, if you don't get enough of certain essential micronutrients, you may feel tired, sleepy, or exhausted "for no reason" at first sight. At the same time, particular nutrient deficiencies may excessively boost the production of serotonin hormone, which contributes to sleepiness and tiredness.
There's still a way out of this poor energy hole! Taking dietary supplements may help you fight deficiencies, recovering your natural energy levels, and possibly maximizing them. However, it's hard to define which supplements to choose and what dosage will be effective for improving your stamina. That's why we decided to create a list of the best energy-boosting supplements to make this choice easier for you.
Top-5 supplements to skyrocket your energy and make the most of your daily performance
If you don't have time to watch your diet, create perfectly balanced meals, or get more proteins when eating on the go, you still can get the nutrients your body needs. By taking dietary supplements, you can continue to pursue your ambitious goals with improved energy for every little goal and huge task you've planned. Let's see which of them are most beneficial when it comes to skyrocketing your stamina.
Vitamin B12 is one of the most effective vitamins to reduce fatigue and make you more energized. B12 is present in your body in three natural forms, each with its beneficial role in your energy. First, it helps regenerate folate, assisting you in blood production and making you more vigorous. What's more, vitamin B12 is an essential part of the citric acid cycle - a process of energy generation by converting carbs, fats, and proteins into it. Finally, this vitamin acts as an antioxidant, which may help you reduce energy-depleting oxidative stress.
In turn, vitamin B12 deficiency may be the reason why you're feeling so exhausted and sleepy after completing even minor tasks. When you're short on B12, your body can't produce enough red blood cells to transport oxygen throughout your body. This state leads to anemia, which causes tiredness, "brain fog," and weakness. Aren't the best partners for a productive day, huh?
If you decide to add vitamin B12 to your supplementation, keep in mind that it's a water-soluble vitamin that your body can't store for a long time. That's why taking it daily for a specific period may be the most efficient approach to help you increase energy. The recommended dosage of vitamin B12 to prevent low energy and tiredness is 250-500 mcg daily. If you have a severe deficiency, you may need a higher dose of 500-1000 mcg.
Among all minerals, iron is literally a cup holder when it comes to supplying your body with energy. Study says that almost 63% of the iron in your body are present in hemoglobin - protein concentrated in your red blood cells. These cells are responsible for oxygen transportation throughout your body. For example, when you work out, your muscles require more oxygen to contract. Though, if your body lacks iron, your blood can't provide enough oxygen, impairing your endurance and energy efficiency.
WHO claims that almost 30% of adults worldwide are iron-deficient. If you feel like your energy and endurance are limited, then taking iron supplements may help you. The Journal of Nutrition research shows that they may help you increase your endurance by 45%. Another survey has found that taking iron supplements can boost your workout performance.
The recommended iron dosage for men is 8,7 mg daily, while women need a bit larger dose - 14,8 mg per day. For better iron absorption, you can take it together with vitamin C, not necessarily a supplement - it can be a glass of orange or grapefruit juice.
Well-known among athletes, creatine is an amino acid with powerful muscle-building and stamina-boosting properties. Your body stores it in the muscles, which use this amino acid for producing energy. You need it to perform specific physically demanding tasks - that's why this amino acid is a great energy-boosting supplement!
Journal of Sports Nutrition study shows that taking creatine supplements increases creatine storage of your body and helps you restore your ATP molecules between exercises. Besides, long-term creatine intake volumizes your muscle cells, which increases your body's ability to synthesize protein and store more glycogen for energy production. So if you want to make the most out of your gym performance and boost your energy levels, consider taking a creatine supplement.
Creatine supplements are available as a powder that you can add to your drinks or meals. A dose of 2-20 grams is considered a safe dose, which may help you maximize your workout performance and give you more energy for everything planned. Even if you're not so fond of sports, it will also benefit you, so don't hesitate to try it!
If you're a devoted coffee lover, you should know that it's not the only natural drink that may give you a second breath. Guarana is a natural herb that contains x4 times more caffeine than coffee beans! And caffeine is a popular stimulant that can enhance the circulation of such hormones as adrenaline and cortisol, making you more vigorous, energized, and alert.
Surprisingly, due to the high content of caffeine, guarana supplements may also enhance your endurance capacity. Journal of American Physiological Society has found that people who consume caffeine have 60% more glycogen in muscles than those who don't take it. And since muscles use glycogen as their primary energy source, you'll be able to do more exercises with less fatigue.
What also makes guarana more effective than coffee is that aside from caffeine, it contains energy-boosting chemicals which help you get a long-term energy boost. Plus, guarana is an organic source of antioxidants, enabling you to reduce inflammation - the number one enemy of your energy levels.
If you want to start taking guarana supplements, try to avoid sugary energy drinks with guarana since glucose lowers the energy-boosting effect of this herb. The best option for leveling up your stamina is guarana pills, with no sugar and harmful additives. You can take 75-100 mg of guarana daily for one month safely.
A traditional herbal remedy to increase energy and endurance, ashwagandha doesn't contain caffeine but still is highly effective for making you less tired and more vigorous. It's a natural adaptogen, helping your body resist physical stress. Therefore, ashwagandha is a potent herb to reduce muscle soreness and promote endurance during workouts and active days.
Indian researchers have found that ashwagandha can be an effective treatment to improve your vitality and physical endurance. They conveyed a survey, which included 50 healthy adults taking ashwagandha supplements. Results have shown that this herb can enhance your oxygen capacity, endurance, and overall muscle strength. In addition, ashwagandha contains antioxidants, helpful when treating inflammation and oxidative stress.
This herbal supplement is mainly available as a powder of its blended root. The dosages of 500-600 mg per day will be effective for boosting your energy levels and strength.
Your energy levels define your daily productivity and everyday progress towards the goals you set. Still, sometimes even a healthy sleep routine can't help you feel more energized throughout the day. If you feel like you're becoming tired even after minor tasks, then you may lack certain micronutrients. In this case, such supplements like vitamin B12, creatine, or iron may help you treat deficiency and get your energy back! Besides, you can also add herbal supplements like guarana or ashwagandha to your nutrition and feel their energy-boosting effects.
- Survey Finds Average U.S. Adult Feels Tired At Least Three Days A Week (2020)
- Vitamins And Minerals For Energy, Fatigue And Cognition: A Narrative Review Of The Biochemical And Clinical Evidence (2020)
- Adenosine Triphosphate (2020)
- Vitamin B12 And Energy (2019)
- The Citric Acid (Krebs) Cycle (2020)
- Vitamin B12 Deficiency (2019)
- Present Knowledge In Nutrition (2012)
- Anaemia (2021)
- Iron Deficiency And Reduced Work Capacity: A Critical Review Of The Research To Determine A Causal Relationship (2021)
- Does Iron Supplementation Improve Exercise Performance In The Absence Of Anemia? (2019)
- Iron (2019)
- Creatine: The Nutritional Supplement For Exercise - Current Concept (2002)
- Creatine Supplementation With Specific View To Exercise/Sports Performance: An Update (2012)
- Creatine (2020)
- Guarana Provides Additional Stimulation Over Caffeine Alone In The Planarian Model (2015)
- Cortisol Responses To Mental Stress, Exercise, And Meals Following Caffeine Intake In Men And Women (2006)
- Post-Exercise Caffeine Helps Muscles Refuel (2008)
- Guarana (2021)
- Adaptogenic And Anxiolytic Effects Of Ashwagandha Root Extract In Healthy Adults: A Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Study (2019)
- Efficacy Of Ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera [L.] Dunal) In Improving Cardiorespiratory Endurance In Healthy Athletic Adults (2015)