Holistic Healing Kuel Category Expert: Carol Lee
Lack of energy is one of the most common complaints, particularly as we navigate the peri and post menopause phase of our life. We can however, make simple add-ins that can make a big difference; here are four of my favourites.
1. Make Sugar-free Snacking Choices
Many people use sugary snacks to boost their energy. In my experience, as a sugar-freedom coach, this is the habit that most people find the hardest to break. That afternoon slump, the mid morning cravings, and the one that gets so many people, the after dinner munchies.
If however, you can reset your snacking habits to food that helps balance your blood sugar, rather than setting it on a rollercoaster, your energy will remain constant, your brain clear, and your emotions less frazzled.
I encourage people to plan to snack, and slowly, as people balance their blood sugar, they find they need to snack less and less. One principle is to not snack on fruit alone, but to combine it with a fat and/or protein.
Here are some ideas:
– Blueberries and almonds
– Humus and carrot sticks
– Chopped crunchy apple and cheese cubes
– Whole milk yogurt and berries
– Sliced apple or pear with a nut butter such as almond, peanut or cashew
2. Connect In With The Seasonal Energy
It’s so easy to disconnect from the world outside, from nature, especially if we are on screens a lot of the time. In Traditional Chinese medicine, the Five Element theory connects to the Five seasons and each has a very different energy.
Spring; great for planning and organizing, let’s go energy. Summer; expansion and growth, more outward, social energy, harvest. Autumn/Fall; reflecting and cutting back. Winter; inward energy, retreat, refueling and rest.
Spring and Summer are the most vital and energetic. Harvest time holds the balance, in Autumn the energy reduces and Winter is a quiet inner time. Having awareness of the seasonal energy means we can tweak our schedule to ’ride the wave’ so to speak.
It is Winter now in the Northern Hemisphere, but the first signs of Spring are coming. People often want to rush out of Winter, keen to head towards Summer and the warmth, but for our energy we need to continue to soak in this resting time as long as possible. This doesn’t mean hibernating for the Winter months, but it does mean pacing yourself so you are a better custodian of your energy. You could do this by…
– Walking a little slower and going to bed earlier
– Choosing gentle stretching rather than vigorous exercise.
– Choosing meditation rather than social media.
– Being social at home rather than going out.
– Enjoying some wholesome comforting non-processed carbohydrate meals such as barley risotto, stuffed squashes, spiced porridge.
– Experimenting with warming herbal and spiced drinks; turmeric lattes with almond milk, hot lemon and ginger, hot chocolate made with cacao powder and coconut cream.
3. Have A Daily ‘Retreat’; Indulge In A Mindful Moment
A busy-brain can overwhelm us and be a real energy drain. This is one of my favourite techniques to do when I’m stuck in my head and I need a quick energy boost.
I pause, close my eyes and take a breath. I then focus on either what I can smell or what I can hear and I then enjoy the world only through that sense for a couple of minutes. I love doing this outside where the sounds and smells are often delightful, but this also works in a busy office where you can focus on the smell of your coffee or herbal tea or at home focusing on the dull hum of the fridge.
4. Drink More Water
Most of us know that drinking water is good for us, after all everything that happens in the body happens in the medium of water. But how does it provide natural ways to feel more energetic?
Once again I go back to the wisdom of Traditional Chinese Medicine or TCM, and the Five Elements. Within this philosophy it is the Water Element that holds our energy, and we can track how our Water element is doing by noticing how we feel between 3pm and 7pm
This is because each element (and meridian) has a time of peak flow during 24 hours. The Water element meridians of Bladder and Kidney are at their peak between 3-7pm. If we are dehydrated, this is the time of day when this will show up most clearly, we may feel exhausted, crave a sweet snack, be foggy headed and unable to focus.
– Having it warm with lemon, ginger or fresh herbs
– Enjoying little and often rather than all in one go
– Drinking slowly and mindfully
– Slowly increasing each day and substituting caffeine drinks with herbal options
About the Author:
Carol Lee is a Naturopathic Nutritional Therapist, Sugar-freedom coach, Creative Kinesiologist, Teacher and Author from the U.K. She has been working in Complementary Health for over 25 years. Her holistic approach to healing and transformation is about listening to, witnessing and working with the body’s ‘knowing’. Carol believes this is where we hold our wisdom, experience and capacity for change, especially as mid-life women. She works with women wanting to kick the sugar habit, those who are navigating health challenges, or who are wanting to up-level their life in some way; helping them to clear the blocks to success and wellbeing. She is currently enjoying her empty nest, and the freedom it brings, with her partner Jon. She loves the coast and walking the wild landscape of South West UK, snuggling her sweet rescue cat Stevie, gardening and eating delicious, nutritious food.