Afternoon Slump? How to Boost Your Energy Quickly | | @ProHealthSpotCould your wintertime energy levels use a Venti Pumpkin Spice Latte? Not so fast. Before you head to the nearest coffee shop and order an oversized Cuppa Joe, try these seven tips to boost your energy quickly and naturally.


Step Into the Light

In winter, days become so short it seems the sun only shines when you’re trapped at your desk. Too little exposure to natural sunlight decreases your body’s vitamin D production and throws your circadian rhythms out of whack. If you work at the office, grab a cup of hot cocoa and take a break outside or chat up a coworker with a sunny window. If you work at home, head outdoors for a brisk midday walk or flip on more lights around your workspace.


Hold a Stretch

Stretching not only helps you feel more invigorated, but it can also undo some of the damage caused by your desk job. Next time you’ve hit an afternoon lull, try doing some desk-friendly yoga poses that open up your airways, increase blood flow, and relieve muscle tension. For even more energy, inhale and exhale deeply a few times with each move.


Snack Smart

What you eat now will greatly impact how you feel later. Sugar-laden breakfast foods that make you feel peppy during your long commute will leave you feeling drowsy by the time your morning meeting starts. Stock up on protein-filled snacks for a high-energy boost and more balanced blood sugar. Tip: Avoid consuming too much salt by creating your own mix of nuts, dark chocolate and dried fruit.


Have a Laugh

When you’re in a slump, head to YouTube or The Onion and watch a funny clip. Laughing out loud (literally) will help you feel more awake, refreshed and uplifted, as it raises your heart rate and improves your mood. You’ll also increase your alertness and productivity sans caffeine.


Get Guzzling

It’s easy to forget to drink enough water. Add to that high caffeine consumption, and your body can become mildly dehydrated – a common cause of daytime drowsiness. Plus, dehydration can lower your concentration and make you irritable. Feel more awake now by increasing your intake of ice cold H2O. And if you don’t care for the taste of plain water, try adding a sugar-free flavor enhancer.


Pop a Vitamin

If you’re feeling sluggish, you may not be getting enough vitamins and minerals from your diet. Consider taking a multivitamin or daily supplement of vitamin B complex, which includes energy-boosting B12. Bonus: B complex improves your skin, hair and memory.


Smell Something Wonderful

Did you wake up feeling like a zombie? Sniffing certain scents deliver just the pick-me-up you need. Peppermint can increase your motivation and help you power through a tough workout. Citrusy fragrances can help you fight fatigue. Rosemary can help you fight physical and mental exhaustion. Infusers, body lotions and essential oils are great ways to get your smell on.


Now It’s Your Turn

What are your go-to tricks for instantly kicking up your energy levels? Share your tips in the comments below.