When you’re busy and constantly on the go, it can be tempting to reach for a cup of coffee or a chocolate bar when your energy levels take a dip. Next time you feel tired and lacklustre, why not try one of our favourite natural pick-me-ups instead?
Alternate Nostril Breathing
The idea behind this yoga technique is that by breathing through one nostril at a time you take in equal amounts of oxygen to both sides of the brain, boosting its overall function. Start by holding your right nostril closed with your right thumb, and breathe in slowly through your left nostril for a count of four. Close your left nostril with your ring finger and release your thumb from your right nostril. Exhale, steadily, through your right nostril, to the count of eight. Then inhale through your right nostril for a count of four, close your right nostril with your thumb and breathe out through your left nostril for a count of eight. Practise a couple of rounds initially and gradually increase.
Ginger and Lemon Tea
Next time you feel that mid-afternoon slump coming on, don’t reach for a double espresso, try a spicy ginger and lemon tea instead. Ginger has warming properties, meaning that it can help to improve the circulation which, in turn, improves the delivery of vitamins, minerals and oxygen to all the cells in the body. It’s a fantastic natural pick-me-up! Here’s how to make it:
Take a two-inch piece of fresh ginger root, peel it thoroughly and cut into thin slices. Bring four cups of water to the boil in a saucepan and add the sliced ginger. Cover the pan and let it simmer for about 15 minutes. Strain the water, discarding the ginger, and pour into a mug. Add a slice of lemon and enjoy! You can keep the remainder in a flask to drink throughout the day, whenever you feel in need of a lift.
A carefully chosen blend of aromatherapy oils can invigorate the senses, lift our mood and restore our energy levels. However, it is important to use essential oils with care, and remember that they must not be used undiluted on the skin. Try combining the following blend of energising oils with an egg-cupful of a pure base oil such as sweet almond and massage into your neck and shoulders:
- 1 drop of ylang ylang
- 2 drops of grapefruit
- 3 drops of bergamot
For some lovely essential oils we recommend you try one of the following: