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Energy Boosting Options: Fatigue Fighters or False Claims



Ginseng May help body adjust to physical and mental stress. It does not stimulate the nervous system but may alter hormone levels.
Ephedra Stimulates the nervous system and is not recommended for anyone with cardiovascular problems or high blood pressure.
Carnitine Supplied in ample amounts in milk, poultry, fish and meat. A deficiency could cause fatigue. There is no evidence people benefit from supplements.
Power Bars Combinations of protein, sugar and fat, often with vitamin fortification. Promises to deliver energy. Caution: avoid those with a high fat level, as they could provide unwanted calories. These may be good for a snack if those low in fat and sugar are selected. Limit to 5 grams of fat and 250 calories
Sugar Fosters fatigue in the long run by offering a quick surge of blood sugar followed by a rapid fall.
Vitamin B12 Fatigue may be a symptom of anemia. Vitamin B12 will not give you energy unless you are anemic. Synthetic B12 does not require stomach acid for absorption. About one third of older people don't produce enough stomach acid to absorb natural B12. Synthetic Vitamin B12 is recommended for all people over age 50.
Caffeine Whether in coffee, tea, cola, or No-Doz capsules, caffeine has a reputation as a pick-me-up. It stimulates the central nervous system and counters the energy-blocking effect of a nerve chemical called adenosine. It may increase alertness and even powers of concentration. Caffeine works quickly and wears off quickly. If used regularly, your body will adjust to it and more will be required for the same kick. Excessive amounts may actually contribute to fatigue. Experts say 200-300 milligrams of caffeine provide desired effects for most people without side effects. More may cause nervousness and increase heart rate and blood pressure.
Weight Loss Energy comes from calories, restricting calories may restrict energy. If you are dieting, don't drop below the caloric intake that your body needs. The rule of thumb is to never drop below ten times your weight. (For example: 1500 calories for a 150 pound woman)