Top 10 Energy Hacks

If you are feeling like most people are, you are probably feeling drained, tired, and looking for something to combat the fatigue.  2021 so far feels like a continuation of 2020 because the lockdowns initiated at the end of 2020 were carried over into 2021.  This lockdown may be harder to get through for many because the days are colder and darker and going outdoors for walks is harder.  Seasonal affective disorder is prominent during Winter in a normal year but with this pandemic and lockdown measures, seasonal affective disorder may be more widespread especially with the lack of socialization.

2020 really showed us the strength of our adrenal glands and how well our adrenal and cortisol regulation is.  All the stress and anxiety we experienced activated our hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis.  This led to the production of cortisol and epinephrine (adrenaline) from the adrenal gland. These adrenal glands, if you aren’t familiar with them, sit on top of the kidneys like little hats on our kidneys.  During times of stress and anxiety, we activate our sympathetic nervous system and generate that "fright or flight" response promoting the release of adrenaline.  Following this acute adrenaline rush, we produce cortisol to keep us in survival mode during times of stress. 

Cortisol is a blood sugar hormone which means it increases blood sugar to get more glucose to our muscles and help with energy during physical activities and times of stress.  Cortisol can also suppress the immune system and makes it harder to fight infections which can make us more prone to colds, flus and other infections.  This is why they give glucocorticoids like prednisone and dexamethasone to suppress inflammation in chronic infections, inflammatory states and/or autoimmune conditions.  Cortisol production can also contribute to sex hormone imbalances (testosterone, estrogen and progesterone) and may affect libido, endurance and strength, and for females it might affect their menstrual cycles over time.  High cortisol can affect our sleep and energy levels and over a long period of time, it can increase our blood sugar and put us at risk of diabetes and weight gain.

HPA Axis

Over time, our adrenal glands start to lose their charge and cannot keep up with cortisol production.  This is when we start feeling sluggish, fatigue, brain foggy, low motivated, depressed and may even feel like we are running on adrenaline because in reality, we are.  The good news is that there are ways to re-charge your adrenals and get its cortisol and hormone levels regulated again much like you re-charge your cell phone.  Just like you probably grab your mobile charger and charge your phone before it reaches 0%, the BEST time to begin to re-charge your adrenal glands is before you crash and hit total burn-out.  That means for most people, NOW is the right time!

Dr. Suhani's Top 10 'Energy Hacks' To Combat Fatigue

To re-charge your adrenal glands and re-energize yourself so you can have a more productive and hopefully better 2021!
Eating Right For You


Minimize the carbs, especially refined carbs like white bread, pasta, sugary pastries, etc. Carbs can promote more blood sugar crashes leading to more cortisol secretion. Include protein and healthy fats like nuts, seeds, avocadoes, unsweetened coconut flakes and shreds into each meal. Ensure you have enough fibre in your meals with non-starchy vegetables and low sugar fruits like berries being the best as they are low in sugar and then some starchy vegetables and fruit. Whole-grains are the carbs to opt for if you have a major carb craving because they contain fibre. Protein, healthy fats, and fibre help regulate blood sugar better and can improve energy and preserve cortisol levels a bit better.
Glass of water


Hydration improves blood volume and electrolyte balance and keeps you energized. Start your day with some warm lemon water instead of a coffee or tea to up your water intake and stay hydrated.


With gyms and fitness facilities closed, have a dance party at home with your kids, partner, or even solo; go for walks as much as possible if you can; you can even invest in some home gym equipment. Light exercise is better than intense activity if you are feeling very depleted and/or have low cortisol output. Intense exercise will raise cortisol levels and when you are running on near-empty, you can feel more fatigued after working out instead of energized.
Emerald Lake


Research has proven that spending time in nature lowers our stress and anxiety and helps us stay calmer. This helps to slow down HPA axis activation.


Get 7-8 hours of sleep for adults and 8-10 hours of sleep depending on the age of your children. Disturbed sleep will raise cortisol levels and may lower levels in the morning when they should be highest making you feel tired in the morning and then alter your cortisol rhythm throughout the day. A good night’s sleep is the ultimate energizer on so many levels and helps our body heal.


The most important thing 2020 taught us is that we need to go slow. We were living in such a fast-paced rat-race world that if anything good came out of 2020, it gave everyone a chance to put the brakes on their lives and just SLOW DOWN. A chance to 'catch a breath'. Be okay telling yourself you need some time to do you and/or take a rest day.
Take The Right Supplements

7. Take Your B VITAMINS

B vitamins help with energy metabolism and support mood and so many other pathways in the body. Please work with your healthcare professional like a naturopathic doctor to determine the best one and dose for you because there are so many on the market and everyone has different requirements.


This is vital especially today. Most of us will need something to modulate our cortisol levels and either calm down the HPA axis or re-activate the HPA axis. Most of these are herbs and can interact with medication. PLEASE work with a healthcare professional to determine the right adrenal support for you because you don’t want to end up taking something that will make you feel wired and increase your cortisol levels further or tank your cortisol levels if you are leaning toward the depleted/fatigue side.

9. Check your VITAMIN D, IRON, B12, and HORMONES including your CORTISOL rhythm and THYROID

Naturopathic doctors can order comprehensive hormonal testing for a fee which gives you much more than a blood hormone level tells you for your cortisol, testosterone, DHEA, progesterone and estrogen levels. Nevertheless, blood measurements are still better than no measurement. Vitamin D, iron, thyroid and B12 can be assessed via a blood test. NDs can order blood tests for a fee or you can see your family medical doctor (MD).
More about Hormonal and blood testing
digestive health


Bad gut health leads to malabsorption and nutritional deficiencies which can leave you feeling tired even though you are doing everything else right. If you experience bloating, gas, frequent loose stools or constipation then this is your sign that NOW is the time to get to the bottom of your gut health.


Sometimes you just need some B vitamins and nutrients delivered intramuscularly or right into the blood for a quicker boost while you are working on everything else. Speak to a naturopathic doctor if IVs and/or injections are right for you.
IV and Injection Therapy Info

There you have it – Dr. Suhani’s Top 10 Energy Hacks for 2021 + a BONUS when you are in the ultimate slump and need something to give you a boost.

Need a little guidance navigating any of the areas above? Are you doing everything and still can't seem to kick up those energy levels? Blood tests coming back normal but you are still feeling depleted? Click the link below to book a naturopathic initial assessment and we can review your complete health history and decode what/where the issue lies.


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