At my annual check-up this week, my doctor pulled out that little stick, drew the blood like a vampire and certified that I am low in iron levels; a major contributor for my exhaustion. So, together, we worked out a plan of foods, herbs and supplements, she approved of, to help me feel energized and happy. So far, I’ve emailed portions of this list to many friends, other tired women who say the same thing, “I’ll do anything to feel better.” And they mean it. We’re sick and tired of walking around exhausted, while our kids are running circles around us. So here, is the list, hammered out with the help of my doctor, to bring my energy levels back up to normal. My favorite? The greens… instant energy in a powder. Another benefit — it makes me feel full, so I end up eating less. Enjoy!
- Herbal Teas: Anemia (low-iron levels in the blood) is common among women, with side affects of fatigue.Â Your doctor can preform a blood test to find out if you have this or not. If you learn that you are low in iron, one safe way to restore your iron levels — and energy — is through teas made from the following roots; now widely available at whole foods.Â These herbs are the roots of yellow dock, burdock, dandelion, and Chinese wild yam. Gather a teaspoon of any or all of these dried herbs, and pour boiling water on top, cover and let steep overnight.Â Strain and drink.
- Greens: Sometimes, the last thing we need is another supplement; what we really need is healthy nutrition. None of us eat enough greens, yet their full of vital minerals and vitamins. Greens Plus, is a powder that you mix with water or juice, and it provides you with the benefits of greens in one drink.Â Don’t even bother with the chocolate-flavored powder- it’s horrible.Â Berry is a much better alternative; but don’t get me wrong, the stuff is not going to be one of your most favorite-tasting beverages; but like most Moms I’ve talked to have said, “I’ll drink anything to feel better.”
- Carrots: Carrot juice also assimilates iron quickly in your blood stream. Carrot soup, or a vegetable-based soup of carrot and beets, will increase your iron levels naturally.
- Watch the Tea: Black tea, my favorite bevereage, unfortunately does slow down the absorption of iron.Â So monitor your intake. So, instead of making yourself another cup of tea in the afternoon, make your self a drink of greens plus.
- Eat Right: Fill your pantry/refrigerator with these foods: beans, red meat, nuts, citrus, asparagus, spinach, mushrooms, soybeans and wheatgerm.
- Beets: Physicians in ancient Greece used beet root to treat anemia; it’s a great blood builder and purifier to the spleen and liver — especially in its ability to build red corpuscles.Â Beet juice is the best way to take your medicine; if you can’t find it, eating beets will help, although it will not be as effective.
- Serotonin: Increase your serotonin levels naturally, with less side-effects than traditional anti-depressants, withÂ 5-HTP. Serotonin is a compound in your body, and is responsible for regulation of mood and behavior.Â Having adequate levels of serotonin can help in feeling calm and relaxed;Â too little sometimes leads to irritability and uneasiness.
- SAM-e: Another way to improve your state of well-being is with SAM-e, which is not only a mood balancer, but is also recommended for chronic fatigue syndrome, arthritis and fibromyalgia.
- Rhodiola: I’ve written about this one before, but Rhodiola Rosea is a wonderful natural remedy for exhaustion, and also boosts your immune system.Â This one is great for the winter blues.
- Thyme: Thyme is loaded with iron, so load up your soups and beef roasts with this herb.
- Spices: You can also find iron in parsley, cumin, curry powder and cinnamon — although they are not as powerful as thyme. As if you needed an excuse to make snickerdoodles.
- Cast Iron: Buy yourself (or use Grandma’s) iron skillet, and use it.Â The iron from the skillet does work its way into your food.
- Siberian Ginseng fights fatigue and boost energy without the harsh stimulants. However, it is best to meet with an herbalist to determine which Ginseng (hot or cold) is right for your system.