We all suffer from bouts of sluggishness from time to time, but for some, it’s an everyday reality. If you’re one of these people, here’s a secret: You don’t have to feel tired on a daily basis. The good news is that you can combat tiredness and boost your energy naturally.

Why feeling tired is a real problem

Sluggishness — known as fatigue or lethargy, in medical speak — is that universal feeling of exhaustion, lack of energy, or being generally slow and inactive.

Feeling tired day in and day out is a serious cause for concern, and signals that something in your lifestyle needs to be changed immediately. On average, Britons lose over 7.5 years to exhaustion in their lifetime, translating to more than 20 hours weekly. These are crazy amounts of time lost to sluggishness that can be better spent doing something more fun and meaningful! For many people, Gala Bingo found that sluggishness usually sets in at 3pm or what is commonly referred to as the infamous mid-day slump. This not only makes the rest of the day unproductive, but it can even put a serious damper on people’s spirits.

So if all of this rings true for you, or if you just want to feel better throughout the day, read on to find out natural remedies to exhaustion.

How to combat sluggishness

Get quality sleep

Feeling low in energy? Take a nap! It’s no big secret that getting a good night’s rest is the fastest solution to tiredness with immediate results. However, it’s not about the amount of time you spend in bed — quality matters more.

Rather than ensuring 8 hours of sleep, focus on how restful it actually is. You can do that by upgrading your pillows or mattress for increased comfort, banning the use of screens in the bedroom, and taking a relaxing shower before you get tucked in. These habits can minimise the amount of time you spend tossing and turning and make sure you’re actually getting quality shut-eye.

Fuel your body properly

Similar with your sleeping habits, focus on controlling your portions as well as the quality of the food you’re eating. A crash diet can result in lack of available energy, while binge eating can make you feel too heavy to move. Limit your intake of sugar, trans fats, and saturated fats. In other words, ditch the junk food diet and switch to whole food ingredients that are naturally energy-boosting.

It’s also important to stop relying on caffeinated drinks to stay awake. Other than the tiredness that comes when the caffeine wears off, Caffeine Informer adds that you might be unable to focus, feel irritable, and have more trouble staying up. You can still have your daily dose of caffeine, but make sure to limit it to about 200 mg. And don’t forget to drink water!

Work out more

Too tired to function? Get moving! It sounds a little bit counterproductive, but one of the reasons you might be feeling tired in the first place is due to inactivity. Exercise is known to boost the body’s endorphins, or those happy hormones that reduce feelings of exhaustion.

Of course, you don’t have to go full-on beast mode at the gym, especially when you’re already struggling to move. In fact, we’ve talked about the benefits of low-intensity exercise for people with low energy in our post ‘Are You Too Fatigued To Workout?’. You can decrease your exhaustion by as much as 65% by walking at a leisurely pace, or you can also try a gentle yoga practice.

Try to relax

Covering all the physical aspects of preventing sluggishness will be a waste if you don’t pay attention to stress relief. According to Deirdre Conroy of Michigan Medicine’s Sleep Disorders Center, stress impacts sleep quantity and quality and may even lead to insomnia in some people. Stress can also result in eating poorly or skipping exercise, which further contribute to tiredness.

The great news is that there are many outlets for stress. Exercise, meditation, hobbies, and spending time with friends and family are some of the best ways to relieve stress. Find something that works for you and start feeling like your best self!