I spend a lot of time talking to those I work with about their energy. When people come to see me they are often feeling low on the energy scale, but this is just one symptom. Often times as dig deeper they are also very stressed out!!
The low energy could well be a result of an overactive mind. Many of us are feeling depleted as a result of everything going on right now. Our brains are detecting extra threat and predicting we will need more energy to manage it. This means our body is burning through the extra energy to get us ready to respond.
If you are feeling extra exhausted these days, it may be time to consider why.
Here are 5 signs that you need to address your energy and underlying stress.
- You have increased cravings – especially for sugar
Chronic stress activates the adrenal glands to produce stress hormones. An overproduction of these hormones drops your blood sugar (thanks to our stress hormone) causing us to burn blood sugar for energy instead of fat. When your blood sugar drops your brain turns on the sugar cravings to replace the burned-off sugar.
If you are chronically stressed out your adrenal glands can’t keep up with the constant workload and lose their ability to continue pumping out enough hormones to keep glucose in your system. The result is a consistent underproduction of cortisol (a stress hormone), which in turn yields low blood sugar, fatigue, and more sugar cravings.
If you suffer from cravings it is always a good idea to determine what is causing them.
- You have brain fog
Brain fog can show up in a variety of ways – an inability to concentrate, difficulty making up your mind, needing more coffee to focus, or more snacks to stay awake.
Chronic stress can wreak havoc on your body. When your body perceives a stressful situation, it activates the fight-or-flight response. This response triggers the release of adrenaline and norepinephrine, and ultimately moves energy away from your body’s typical functions and towards the stressor. This can make it difficult to think clearly, harder to focus, and could exhaust your brain. This leads to you feeling foggy in the brain.
- You feel that you sleep at night, but are tired during the day
You probably know that chronic insomnia can trigger exhaustion, but even a single night of interrupted sleep can impact you the next day. Research shows that after a night of poor sleep people experience lower moods, shorter attention spans, and low energy. If you have a few nights of disturbed sleep a week it is going to impact you all week.
Stress disrupts sleep and can often cause us to wake frequently during the night. These wake ups will leave us feeling tired the next day despite us “sleeping” the night before. It is the cumulative affect of these disrupted nights that sneak up on us deplete our energy.
- Your workouts are suffering
Being exhausted will cause every aspect of your life to suffer. Your brain will fall behind because you are tired and your ability to properly challenge our body will be limited. This impacts your exercise performance and workouts will feel harder and leave you feeling more depleted rather than energized.
Another flag is if you are usually someone who gets your workouts in, but now can’t even muster the energy to do it. Our bodies and minds want to find an easy way out so if your body is exhausted it is going to default to rest. When this happens it is an indication that you need to sort out what’s causing the fatigue.
- You find yourself getting frequent colds
Stress and immunity have an inverse relationship – the higher your stress, the lower you immunity. Cortisol (a stress hormone) can boost our immunity in short spurts by limiting inflammation. Over time, your body will get used to having too much cortisol in the blood and this can cause more inflammation, which can lead to other symptoms and more frequent illness.
Stress also decreases our white blood cell count – the lower this count the more likely we are to pick up viruses. If you find yourself frequently under the weather it’s time to evaluate what’s going on.
If any of this sounds familiar and you want to find the underlying cause the Vitality Formula is the perfect solution for you. Click here for all the details.
Allison Madigan, Holistic Nutritionist
Allison graduated from Queen’s University with a BAH in Economics and started a career in the marketing world. Nutrition and wellness were always at the forefront of her thoughts. After 15 years in the industry she decided that it was time to follow her passion and go back to school. She took a leap of faith, resigned from work, enrolled at the Edison Institute of Nutrition and hasn’t looked back. She has been working in the field for 2 years now and loving it.
She has a strong belief in the power of food and proper nutrition to keep us healthy and prevent disease. Her mission is to empower people to make healthy and mindful decisions for themselves to achieve their optimal health and wellness.
Allison has a keep interest in hormone balance, food sensitivities, stress and digestive health. She works with her clients to formulate a plan that will work for them. Her plans will include diet modifications, lifestyle and supplements suggestions as well as some mindset work.