Often draggy — even after a good night’s sleep? Chances are that a hidden nutrient shortfall is the culprit. Pinpointing the main cause of your fatigue, then eating the right food, can help you stay sharp, focused, and energized all day, every day!
Eat raisins and almonds.
If your get-up-and-go is gone by lunchtime, you may be low on boron, a mineral that stimulates midday production of energizing brain waves, USDA researchers say. Snacking on a 1/2 cup of raisins or almonds
every day can quickly correct a boron shortfall, firing up electrical activity in the brain and ending energy lulls in as little as one week. Other good sources of boron include apples and dried apricots.
Consume more protein.
One in five of us has too little iron right now, a problem often marked by a steep fall in stamina. “Even a mild iron shortage saps your cells’ ability
to absorb and use oxygen,” says Jacob Teitelbaum, M.D., author of From Fatigued to Fantastic.
Eating four ounces of iron-rich lean meat, poultry, or fish daily could cut your tiredness 45 percent or more in 10 weeks, suggests Cornell University research.
Have a baked potato.
Potatoes are rich in potassium, a mineral that prods your adrenal glands to release energizing adrenaline. So if your potassium levels dip, so does your ability to get through the day. Other signs: foot cramps, charley horses, and/
or heart palpitations. Eating a potassium-packed baked potato with the skin each day could decrease your tiredness within a week, say USDA researchers. Other options: plain non-fat yogurt or mushrooms.
Make some guac.
Often anxious and don’t know why? The cause may be a deficiency of B vitamins, which are vital for healthy nerves and brain cells. Avocados
are rich in stress-relieving B vitamins — plus they’re high in both monounsaturated fat and potassium, nutrients that help stop the exhausting blood pressure fluctuations that can be triggered by anxiety.
Eat red peppers.
As many as one in two of us has periodontal disease, which causes chronic inflammation, making it a common cause of chronic fatigue. If you have
any bleeding in the gums when you floss or brush, or redness or puffiness along your gum line, it could signal that you’re low in vitamin C, a nutrient
that helps heal and strengthen gum tissue, say University of Arizona scientists.
Eating a daily cup of red peppers — which pack nearly three times more
vitamin C than an orange — will do the trick, says Steven Pratt, M.D., assistant clinical professor at the University of California, San Diego. In addition to citrus, other foods that deliver lots of vitamin C include onions, kale, broccoli, cauliflower, and kiwis. Or you can take 500 mg. of
vitamin C daily.
This article originally appeared in our print magazine, Reverse Aging.