You'll also need to get a head start on all the healthy living books you'll need to read to keep up with the latest wellbeing science.
6.30am: Exercise early
Burning calories isn’t the only benefit of an early walk, run or cycle. “Your brain needs natural light to turn on all of its functions,” explains Satchin Panda, author of The Circadian Code.
“You can start anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours before or after sunrise, as the light at this time can be as much as 800 to 1,000 lux – an ideal amount of daylight.
"(An office without windows is about 80 to 100 lux.) This light will activate the blue light sensors in your eyes, and as you exercise, the sensors fire up your brain, meaning faster reaction times.”
Studies have shown these effects can even last till the evening. Prefer the gym?
“Avoid the darkest corner of the room and find a spot next to a large window,” advises Satchin.
7.30am: Pump iron before breakfast
Iron deficiency is one of the leading causes of tiredness in women, with 27% of us not getting enough.
“The top three symptoms are fatigue, exhaustion and brain fog, so ask your GP for a blood test,” says professor Toby Richards, leader at The Iron Clinic.
“Most people can get the right amount from a healthy, balanced diet, but if your GP prescribes a supplement, take it on an empty stomach with orange juice, as acid is key for absorption.”
Or try Spatone Apple Liquid Iron Supplement With Vitamin C, £12.49 for 28 sachets.
12.30pm: Eat a carnitine-boosting lunch
Carnitine transports fat to your cells so it can be used as energy, and not having enough can cause dizziness and muscle weakness.
“The body makes its own carnitine from a combination of nutrients, so there’s no recommended dietary amount,” explains nutritional therapist Jackie Lynch.
“But the best sources come from foods such as beef and milk.
"Veggie proteins soya and quinoa contain amino acids that are used to make carnitine too.”
3pm: Stretch it out
Spend hours hunched at a desk? The area of your back between your shoulder blades (around the T3 vertebra) is probably tight by mid-afternoon.
Studies published in The Lancet have found that a total of 1 million years of productive life is lost in the UK every year because of disability from back pain.
Stretching helps release tension and protect your back long term. “Stand with your feet hip-width apart, hands on your hips,” says Danielle Marchant, author of Pause Every Day.
“Inhale and lean back, squeezing your shoulder blades together. If it’s comfortable, lean your head back. Exhale, tuck your tailbone under, and round your back forward, tucking in your chin. Repeat five times.”
4pm: Drop the balls
“Don’t reach for trendy snacks such as protein balls or bars as an afternoon pick-me-up,” says nutritional scientist Toral Shah.
“The sugar content can be high – around 15g per portion, which is half the recommended daily limit – and they’ll send your energy levels soaring, before immediately crashing.
"Just like meals, your snacks should involve three key components: protein, fibre and complex carbs. Try an apple with some oatcakes and peanut butter to keep your blood sugar levels constant until dinner.”
8pm: Dine at the right time
To reset your circadian rhythm – AKA your body clock – and get a restful night’s sleep, aim to finish dinner 12 hours after you’ve had breakfast.
“Your performance at any moment of the day is determined by what you did the night before – when you ate and how much you slept.
"That is what sets your clock, which then primes your body and brain,” says Satchin.
“If breakfast begins at 8am, dinner should end by 8pm. Late-night eating disturbs your circadian clock, and as a result, your peak performance window between 10am and 3pm the next day is disturbed.”
10pm: Heat your feet for a better sleep
A good sleep routine should start 60-90 minutes before you climb between the sheets.
“In the evening and for the first part of the night, your body temperature naturally drops by just under 1°C. This change is associated with opening the sleep gate,” says Dr Katharina Lederle, author of .
“To encourage this to happen – especially if you have circulation or other medical problems – keep your feet warm. Wearing socks or treating yourself to a foot bath not only warms the skin, but also dilates blood vessels, which means heat can slowly dissipate via your extremities.”
BY THE NUMBERS
- 7.5 is the number of years the average Brit feels tired for during their lifetime.
- 2/3 of us wake up exhausted every day, promise to have an early night – but never do.
- 64% of women say they’re too tired to exercise, compared to 52% of men.
- 1/2 of us spend weekends recovering from work rather than socialising.
- 1/5 of people feel unusually tired, and 1 in 10 have prolonged fatigue, with women more affected than men.
- Sources: Healthspan, Vogel, Powwownow, Royal College of Psychiatrists.
- The Circadian Code: Lose Weight, Supercharge Your Energy, And Transform Your Health From Morning To Midnight by Satchin Panda (£14.99, Vermilion)
- Va Va Voom: The 10 Day Energy Diet (£14.99, Headline)
- Pause Every Day: 20 Mindful Practices For Calm & Clarity by Danielle Marchant (£6.99, Aster)
- Sleep Sense: Improve Your Sleep, Improve Your Health by Dr Katharina Lederle (£12.99, Exisle)
- Visit Theironclinic.com, Theurbankitchen.co.uk
- Stockist: Spatone (Boots.com).
Source: Read Full Article