Fatigue can follow you around like a leech even after maintaining a healthy diet and active lifestyle. This crisis of energy happens to a major portion of working adults who has the need to keep up with the pace of the fast-moving world. Keeping up the energy level is another challenge that we need to face in our daily lives. Even though a continuous tiredness can be a symptom of a bigger problem lying dormant inside your body, you might try identifying a few energy zapping habits and changing them to regain your energy. Don’t run to the doctor just yet.
7. Irregular Sleeping Pattern
If your everyday sleeping routine is not the same, you are probably not getting enough sleep and it might be messing with the rhythms of your body. It will cause you more tiredness instead of restoring your energy at the end of the day. Having a restless sleeping partner just adds up to the erratic sleeping pattern.
Make sure your sleeping hours are constant every night, not deferring more than an hour or so on weekends and make sure you are getting at least 7 hours of sound sleep.
Sitting around working on your desk for endless hours at a time can cause more harm than good. Sitting still makes your heart rate and blood circulation slow down as your brain relates the stillness to sleeping. It also weakens your muscles thus making it harder to do physical tasks.
Exercise for a least half an hour every day, be it at the gym, at home, dancing, jogging, etc. If you don’t have the time, then try walking around every hour at your workplace.
Many of us forget to drink sufficient amount of water while running around to keep up with our hectic lifestyle, thus resulting to the lethargic feeling. Severe dehydration occurs in our body without giving us much indication except for the numbing tiredness and sometimes nausea.
Minimum 8-10 glasses of water every day is a must. You might even need more if your job is more physically demanding than average. If you have a habit of drinking caffeinated products, you might need to compensate that with a few more glasses of water.
4. Tension and Stress
If you have a habit of being stressed or tensed all the time, your energy will get drained faster. Because people tend to clench their muscles, hyperventilate or jiggle feet when they are stressed.
Try stopping your work every few hours and concentrate on releasing tension from your body. Take deep and slow breaths by ballooning your stomach and chest and loosening all the muscles in your body by massaging them.
3. Nutrition and Diet
Improper nutrition and imbalanced diet may cause a lot of this unexplained tiredness and fatigue. If your diet contains lots of carbs, sugar, and processed foods, it is possible that this is the reason behind your lethargy.
Include complex carbs like whole grains, proteins and healthy fats in your meals and snacks. You can try having unprocessed food to avoid added sugar and have fruits, honey, etc. to satiate your sugar cravings.
2. Clutter and Mess
A messy office space or a cluttered closet can give you an overwhelming feeling of anxiety and stress, which you cannot really pinpoint. The impending activity of having to clear up the mess is bound to make you feel tired and make it harder to focus on anything.
Get rid of anything that you don’t need and label everything to keep everything organized in order and avoid any messy situation in the future.
Physically or emotionally, if you are cooped up in your home alone or not talked to someone properly and openly about what’s going on inside your mind, can cause fatigue.
A day out in the sun, a heart-to-heart conversation with a friend or family can give you the relief that your body might need to restore your energy level.
All these 7 habits are the reason behind oxygen deficiency and why your blood circulation slows down. Utilize a little time every day to help yourself to get out of these habits that zap your energy before making an appointment with the doctor.
I recently moved into a co-living community where each suite has four bedrooms and a kitchenette that’s smaller than some kitchen areas I’ve seen in mid-range hotel rooms. Our suite has a conventional stovetop and range and cabinets, but space is precious. Whether you’re in a small apartment or a dorm, making smart use of the kitchen area is key to staying organized and maintaining some sort of harmony among roommates.
I’ve given a lot of thought to stocking up my kitchen in a minimalist way, without breaking the bank. The latest kitchen gadgets can beoverwhelming and intimidating, and even more so for novice cooks learning their way around a kitchen. Bottom line: It can be easy to spend a lot of money on items you might not actually use.
Just how many knives does a person really need? An 18-piece set seems excessive unless you’re a professional. What about those pots and pans that are marketed as a must-have collection? While a 10-piece set for $150 to $200 might seem like a good deal, it’s not the best investment for beginners. And it’s certainly not the wisest choice for someone with limited cabinet space.
From baking biscuits and cakes to making pizza, the sturdy and durable 10.25-inch cast-iron pan is one of the most versatile items for cooking and baking. A cast-iron pan comes pre-seasoned and is best for foods that require high heat, as the heat is maintained evenly compared to, say, an aluminum pan. Get a gorgeous sear on a juicy steak, make deliciously flaky fillets, grill a roasted chicken — the possibilities are endless.
Keeping it well-maintained will take a little elbow grease, but it’s key to making a cast-iron pan last decades — it gets better the more you use it.
The Dutch oven that makes meals that’ll last all week, $45.49
The six-quart Dutch oven is yet another versatile piece of cookware that will last you forever. Its heavy, tight-fitting lid and thick bottom help retain the heat for use both on the stovetop and in the oven. Use this for savory stews, chili,crusty, no-knead bread and even crispy french fries.
You don’t need to pay for an expensive brand, but make sure there’s an enamel coating on the bottom to prevent food from sticking to it. If the bottom eventually browns, use a bleach solution to give it some TLC.
The saucepan for slow simmers, rolling boils or liquids, $17.43
The 1.5-quart stainless steel saucepan is best for slow simmers, rolling boils and reducing liquids. You can also use it to make rice and reheat soups, puff up grains and stir sauces — think of the saucepan as the utility cookware for smaller, everyday tasks.
If you plan on doing more big-batch cooking, you can substitute with the Dutch oven rather than getting a larger saucepan that’ll just take up more space.
When it comes to a knife, quality is more important than quantity. Whether you’re mincing, slicing, dicing or chopping, one high-quality 8-inch chef’s knife can do it all.
This Victorinox knife isn’t fancy or high-end by any means, but it’ll get the job done. The ergonomic and nonslip handle makes it popular for cooks who are just starting to develop their culinary skills. Sharpening your knife is the key to making it last, so you might want to invest in a sharpener as well.
For everyday use, an 8-inch nonstick pan does what it’s supposed to do — cook food that slides off easily once prepared, making cleanup a cinch. Eggs and cheesy dishes like quesadillas and grilled cheeseare ideal meals to make on a nonstick pan.
A nonstick pan can hold up well (typically five years, maybe more or less depending on the quality) by avoiding a couple things: metal utensils, as it could scratch the coating; acidic foods like tomatoes and lemons, as they can damage the surface; and cooking sprays, which can aid in the buildup of additives in the spray.
Sheet pans don’t need to be huge, especially if you’re cooking for one or two people. These can be used for reheating leftovers, baking smaller-batch cookies and prepping dinners for two. Bonus: It usually fits inside most toaster ovens.
These are great for broiling as well — the broiler is generally anunderutilized appliance. Similar to grilling, a broiler uses high, direct heat to cook food quickly and give it a browned crust. It’s ideal for flavorful pork chops, steaks and chicken cutlets, especially if you’re short on time.
The must-have accessories, $22.98
You can’t have a full kitchen without serving and cooking utensils. After all, there’s only so much you can do with a pair of chopsticks and a fork.
A wooden spoon won’t get hot if you leave it in a pot while cooking, which helps to keep your fingers and hands burn-free. It’s also safe for nonstick usage — just don’t put them through the dishwasher. Stock up on a set of wooden spoons for $11.99.
Heat-resistant silicone spatulas ($10.99) are another tool you’ll need in your kitchen arsenal. Nonstick spatulas made of rubber or plastic aren’t always durable nor heat resistant — you don’t want to flip a smooth omelet with a spatula that’ll melt around the edges in a hot pan, do you?
The total cost
You can buy all nine items for a total of $196.71. You’ll probably have the best-stocked starter kitchen that’s the envy of all your friends — or at least the ones who can fit in your compact living space.
Even today, when there are more resources for gluten-free foods and recipes than ever before, dropping wheat and other grains from your diet can be hard—both logistically and emotionally. (When we had to leave baguettes behind? It was a tearful goodbye.) It doesn’t really matter if you’ve been gluten-free for years or are just taking the plunge now—here are 15 foods you will probably miss and the best gluten-free replacements we’ve found.
1. Flour Tortillas
If you’re craving flour tortillas, swapping in corn tortillas is definitely a no-brainer. Lettuce is also a classic option, but we’ve found collard greens to be a bit better—the leaves tend to be bigger, stronger, and less likely to rip.
Though there are plenty of gluten-free cracker options in grocery stores these days, you can’t beat the simplicity of a rice cake. We also love brown rice tortillas cut up, toasted, and paired with cheese or hummus.
3. Bread Crumbs
Whether you need bread crumbs in a recipe or just as a topping, gluten-free oats are a great substitute if you send them through a food processor first. Also try crushing up your favorite gluten-free flax or fiber cereal and using that in place of bread crumbs for an extra crunchy topping.
4. Pizza Crust
You could opt for a gluten-free pizza crust, of course, but if you want something a little unexpected, try baking your pizza on mashed potatoes. (Seriously.) If that doesn’t do it for you, spaghetti squashand cauliflower also make awesome, healthy crusts.
Any time you’re craving pancakes, swap whatever flour your recipe calls for with cornmeal to amp up the protein without the gluten. It’ll also add a healthy dose of protein to your morning, and we’re always good with that.
Chopped nuts are a great way to emulate the consistency of traditional granola without risking gluten contamination. They’re perfect on top of a bowl of yogurt, but we also love snacking on them plain.
7. Pre-Made Frosting
Not all pre-made frosting is gluten-free, so if you’re looking for an alternative that’s easier than making your own, give meringue a try. It’s easy to whip up, it’s light, and it adds the right amount of sweetness to any dessert.
Next time you’re craving a crunch on your salad, go for nuts instead of croutons. They’re easy, protein-heavy, and, most importantly, gluten-free.
9. All-Purpose Flour
There are tons of great options to replace all-purpose flour, and honestly, many of them are better than the original. Our favorites are almond flour, coconut flour, buckwheat flour, sorghum flour, almond meal, rice flour, chickpea flour, and brown rice flour. Depending on what you’re making, you might have to combine some of these with cornstarch, tapioca starch, or potato starch.
These days, there are tons of great gluten-free pastas available, and since most of our favorites are made with beans or healthy grains, they’re better for you than the original. Of course, zoodles and other vegetable noodles will also always be a staple in our recipe repetoire.
Replicating the distinct texture of couscous is close to impossible, but other grains like quinoa and polenta can get pretty close. Another good trick? Steam and grate cauliflower for a fluffy, hearty couscous replacement.
12. Soy Sauce
Most soy sauce contains wheat, so opting for tamari, soy sauce’s wheat-free cousin, is your best bet when you need that umami flavor. Still, check the label—some tamari can contain small amounts of wheat you might want to avoid.
Roux is a combination of fat and flour that’s used to thicken soups and sauces, but since you can’t have flour (duh), you’ll need something else. Try using mashed potatoes or a combo of cornstarch and water—both will add the thickness and creaminess you’re looking for.
Anything you can put on a bagel, you can put on a rice cake. Just sayin’.
Originally published December 2011. Updated June 2017.