Taking some vitamins via food or supplements can drastically improve your energy if vitamin deficiency is the cause of your fatigue. Vitamins like magnesium, iron, tyrosine, B vitamins, vitamin K2, and coenzyme Q10 help the body perform many functions leading to more energy production and retention.
Do you find that you cannot get through the day because you’re always tired, despite not doing any hard work?
Many people are walking in your shoes and seeking the same answers you are.
Having low energy and being fatigued always is frustrating and renders one unproductive. It’s pivotal to reverse the trend.
Many factors contribute to low energy, such as poor sleep hygiene, psychological issues, being overweight or underweight, a lack of exercise, lifestyle choices, and a lack of specific vitamins in your diet.
This post focuses on how to boost energy by using vitamin supplements, including the best ten vitamins for the job and the top causes of fatigue and low energy.
What causes a lack of energy and fatigue?
Multiple reasons may explain why you're experiencing low energy or persistent fatigue, including anxiety, vitamin deficiency, depression, poor sleep hygiene, poor diet, excessive alcohol and caffeine, obesity, pregnancy, and other factors. They are all classified under three main categories: psychological, physical, and lifestyle choices.
Your lifestyle choices have an outsized effect on your energy levels. Your sleep habits, how much alcohol and caffeine you consume, how and when you sleep, poor diet and vitamin deficiencies, and lack of physical exercise can lead to fatigue.
Vitamin deficiencies and poor diet
Vitamins and nutrients are essential to the body’s metabolism, the process through which the body converts food into usable energy. Aside from metabolism, vitamins also play a key role in the body’s ability to transport oxygen around the body and healthy neuronal function.
Some necessary energy vitamins and micronutrients include B vitamins (riboflavin, niacin, folate, etc.), iron, magnesium, vitamin K2, and vitamin D.
Being deficient in one or more critical vitamins may affect any of the many reactions required to convert food into energy.
Vitamin deficiencies are more common nowadays due to work schedules and poor eating habits. You’re in a meeting all day and only have a few minutes to grab a quick - sometimes unhealthy - snack. You hardly ever eat a well balanced diet.
Dietary supplements like those produced by Why Not Natural make it easier to keep up with your vitamin needs despite your hectic schedule and personal choices, such as being a vegetarian.
Inadequate sleep hygiene
Lack of sleep or poor sleep hygiene can cause you to be perpetually tired. When you sleep for less than the recommended hours (7-10 hours, depending on your age), you deprive your body of the ability to recalibrate and mend itself.
Your sleep hygiene can also affect the quality of your night’s rest. Four variables affect sleep quality: adequate sleep duration, how long before you fall asleep, sleep regularity, and if and how many times you wake up at night.
Lack of physical activity
Multiple studies between 1945 and 2005 examining the relationship between physical activity and fatigue show that engaging in the former provides “a reduced risk of” experiencing the latter.
So, you may experience a constant feeling of low energy if you currently live a sedentary lifestyle. You can improve your energy levels by incorporating exercises or intense physical activity into your daily routine.
Excessive alcohol and caffeine intake
Too much alcohol and caffeine intake may disrupt your sleep pattern, which may cause you to be tired during the day. You may switch to decaffeinated coffee to reduce your caffeine intake.
One of the reasons psychological issues lead to low energy and fatigue is because they affect sleep hygiene and quality. They may even lead to insomnia.
Psychological issues leading to tiredness are more prevalent than physical causes leading to the same.
Some psychological causes include:
When you hear stress, your first instinct is to think about negative events, like work-related stress. The interesting thing is that positive events can also lead to tremendous stress.
Think of a major positive event you were planning or looking forward to, like marriage, going to college, relocation, going on a date, and the amount of stress you endured during that period.
Stressful events cause us to think and worry more. Scientists have shown that prolonged or chronic stress can lead to stress-related exhaustion disorder and sleep disruptions.
Both factors will deplete your energy levels and leave you running on fumes.
One of the primary symptoms of depression is always having low energy. It can manifest as apathy and even unproductivity in some individuals. An individual with depression may always wake up tired, despite getting adequate sleep.
If you worry daily, consistently for over six months, medical experts will diagnose you with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). GAD defines worrying about your day-to-day issues.
A major symptom of GAD is fatigue or extreme lethargy. Other symptoms may include the inability to focus, restlessness, and poor sleep quality.
Major sudden negative events can cause your emotions to swing wildly in the negative direction. Such events include losing a loved one, a job layoff, or a broken relationship or engagement.
Such wild swings in emotions can take a toll on the body and mind and lead to tiredness and exhaustion.
Health conditions, physical status, and changes in your physiology may contribute to the lethargy you feel.
Your doctor may test for conditions such as iron deficiency anemia, multiple sclerosis, underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), cancer, and fibromyalgia if you’re experiencing chronic fatigue.
Beyond health issues, conditions like pregnancy and drug side effects can make you feel slow and exhausted. You may also be feeling tired because you’re underweight or obese.
An obese person requires more energy to move their body mass and may become quickly exhausted. An underweight person will likely possess weak muscle strength and thus tire quickly.
Best vitamins to improve your energy
We've established that lacking certain vitamins can cause you to feel low on energy. You can correct this deficiency by eating a balanced and healthy diet.
But that can be a tricky prospect for the average person. There's hardly time to cook. On top of that, you must ensure your diet covers all the nutrients you need and in the right proportion.
That's where vitamin supplements play an important role. You can use them to bridge the gap between your vitamin intake and daily requirements.
Whichever method you choose, the best energy boosting vitamins include:
1. B vitamins
The B vitamins provide multiple functions. Together they help the body to create energy or perform adjacent functions that contribute to a healthy and energized body.
Energy production happens at the cell level in the mitochondria. The body’s cells create energy by converting food into fuel. B vitamins contribute significantly to the biochemical reactions occurring on a cellular level.
There’s no need for a deep dive into the mitochondria, but note that lacking one B vitamin may disrupt its biochemical reaction sequence and slow energy production in your body.
One last thing to note about B vitamins is that they are water-soluble, and the body only stores a small amount of B vitamins.
Hence, you must consistently and regularly take B-complex vitamins to continue enjoying their health benefits.
There are eight B vitamins, namely:
The chemical name for vitamin B1 is thiamine. Its primary role is to help the body break down carbohydrates and blood sugar and change them into glucose (energy). Carbohydrates provide the body with energy.
Naturally, you can find thiamine in eggs, nuts, beef steak, bluefin tuna, asparagus, liver, kale, and many others.
The chemical name for vitamin B2 is riboflavin. Riboflavin helps the cells grow and develop. It also helps the body convert food to energy.
Riboflavin also acts as an antioxidant, which can help you mop up damaging free radicals in your system. Mopping up free radicals will help you prevent health conditions such as cancer and heart disease that may cause your energy levels to be low.
Riboflavin also changes vitamins B6 and B9 to forms the body can readily process. Common sources of vitamin B2 include almonds, milk, whole grains, eggs, broccoli, yogurt, soybeans, spinach, brussels sprouts, etc.
Vitamin B3's chemical name is niacin or niacinamide. Aside from helping the body convert food to glucose, niacin is also good for your skin and digestive and nervous systems.
Niacin has also been prescribed as a treatment for high cholesterol. Some natural sources of niacin include eggs, milk, legumes, peanuts, fish, rice, and poultry.
Your body needs vitamin B5 or pantothenic acid to process cholesterol. This function is in addition to helping the body boost energy by breaking down fats and carbohydrates.
Pantothenic acid is also necessary to help the body use other micronutrients, especially vitamin B2.
Vitamin B5 is one of the more easy-to-find B-complex vitamins. You can find it in many foods, including corn, kale, egg yolks, avocado, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, salmon, liver, kidney, and whole grains.
One of the many issues with consuming vitamin B5 through food is that you can lose as much as 15% to 75% of it during cooking, depending on cooking time.
This is where supplements are advantageous. You can guarantee that you are taking the specified amount of vitamins you need.
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxal, pyridoxine, or pyridoxamine) helps your body break down protein. It also helps your body produce antibodies protecting you against infections and viruses that may make you sick and weak.
Pyridoxal also helps the body make hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is pivotal in transporting oxygen from the red blood cells to tissues. Optimal oxygen diffusion provides an energy boost in the body.
The chemical name for vitamin B7 is biotin. The body uses biotin to convert carbohydrates, fats, and amino acid into energy. Dietary sources of biotin include egg yolk, legumes, almonds, walnuts, soybeans, bananas, whole grains, cheese, liver, and broccoli.
Vitamin B9 is also called folate. The synthetic form of vitamin B9 is known as folic acid. Vitamins B9, B6, and B12 help your body to control the level of homocysteine in the blood. A high level of homocysteine can be a sign of heart disease.
Vitamins B9 and B12 also help the body to produce red blood cells and create an enabling environment for iron to work as it should.
These are all important functions that keep your strength and energy levels high.
A deficiency in folate or folic acid can particularly leave you mentally sluggish. Dietary sources of vitamin B9 include spinach, beets, avocado, liver, root vegetables, salmon, legumes, milk, whole grains, leafy vegetables, and orange juice.
Vitamin B12 has three primary functions, including protein metabolism, the formation of red blood cells, and keeping the central nervous system healthy.
The chemical names for vitamin B12 include cyanocobalamin (this is the synthetic form), hydroxocobalamin, adenosylcobalamin, and methylcobalamin. Dietary sources of vitamin B12 include fish, eggs, liver, clams, poultry, and milk.
Vitamin B12 from animal sources is a better option than plant sources because your body absorbs the former better.
The B Complex Liquid supplement by Why Not Natural is the ultimate source for all eight B vitamins.
Magnesium, as a mineral, offers many benefits to the human body, one of which is aiding energy production. It also helps to create and store Adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the energy source at the cellular level.
It’s also a critical mineral for the heart, kidneys, muscles, and all organs. Magnesium also helps the body regulate other vitamins and minerals, like calcium, copper, and potassium.
Anxiety, sleep disorders, insomnia, muscle weakness and spasm, and chronic fatigue are some symptoms of magnesium deficiencies. As we explained above, these symptoms are some of the causes of fatigue or feeling of low energy.
Food sources of magnesium include green leafy vegetables, nuts, and whole grains.
Iron is a prominent mineral in the blood, particularly in red blood cells. It helps the body produce hemoglobin, which enables the red blood cells to carry oxygen to every part of your body. Iron also contributes to the production of ATP.
Iron-deficient people feel tired because their cells are not getting the required oxygen or producing enough ATP. Iron deficiency can lead to anemia, a health condition typified by an abundance of unhealthy red blood cells.
There are two kinds of iron from dietary sources, heme and non-heme iron. The former is more readily absorbed than the latter.
Sources of heme iron include oysters, liver, kidney, fish, poultry, and lean meat. Dietary sources of non-heme iron include beans, nuts, whole grains, legumes, and green leafy vegetables. You can also get this mineral from iron supplements.
We’ve explained how the mitochondria are the energy production center in the human cell. Free radicals can seriously damage the mitochondria and limit their ability to produce energy.
Antioxidants prevent the formation of free radicals by ensuring oxygen does not react with other compounds. Examples of antioxidants include selenium, vitamin C, coenzyme Q10, glutathione, and vitamin E.
So, ensuring antioxidants are part of your diet or gotten through supplementing will keep the cells’ mitochondria healthy and maintain a high level of energy production.
5. Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera)
Ashwagandha loosely translates to “horse smell,” primarily because of how it smells and its reputation as an herb for increasing energy levels and strength. Other names for it include Indian ginseng and winter cherry.
Ashwagandha root extract is a safe supplement available in many variants, such as gummies, liquid drops, and capsules. It’s been proven to ease stress and anxiety, improve immune function, and normalize the body’s response to stress.
6. Vitamin D3
While vitamin D is best known for helping the body maintain strong and healthy bones, research also shows that taking vitamin D3 supplements reduces fatigue.
Vitamin D deficiency symptoms include fatigue, poor sleep, muscle weakness, depression, and a weak immune system.
Although you can get it from dietary sources (salmon, liver, and egg yolk), the best source is sunlight. Your body creates vitamin D as ultraviolet rays strike your skin.
If you don’t regularly get enough sunlight, it’s vital to start taking vitamin D supplements, like those from Why Not Natural (here). Vitamin D comes in two variants, D2 and D3. Vitamin D3 is the better option of the two. People with darker skin are also at risk of being vitamin D deficient.
Melatonin helps the body maintain its internal clock, known as the circadian rhythm. A disruption in your body clock can cause insomnia, one of the factors leading to chronic fatigue and low energy levels.
In mammals, melatonin also plays a big role in how the body stores energy. It also contributes to a healthy metabolism and energy balance optimization in humans. You can help your body produce melatonin by taking a B complex supplement.
Tyrosine helps the body produce many critical substances, including neurotransmitters, dopamine, adrenaline and noradrenaline, thyroid hormones, and melanin.
Thyroid hormones regulate metabolism and how the body uses energy. They also contribute significantly to how the body produces ATP. This function stresses how important tyrosine can indirectly help boost energy levels.
Dietary sources of tyrosine include fish, peanuts, pumpkin and sesame seeds, turkey, chicken, bananas, avocado, and yogurt.
The kidney transforms L-citrulline into L-arginine and nitric oxide, which are important to the body’s circulatory system. Nitric oxide, in particular, relaxes the arteries and makes blood circulation easier.
A healthy circulatory system ensures that oxygen-rich blood reaches every part of your body. You’ll feel fatigued if insufficient oxygen-rich blood is reaching critical organs and tissues.
Many athletes and fitness enthusiasts take L-citrulline to improve athletic performance. The body makes some L-citrulline, but you can also find it in watermelons.
10. Vitamin K2
The body requires vitamin K2 for the electron transport chain in the mitochondria. This chain function allows the mitochondria to perform their primary function.
Research also shows that Vitamin K2 may also improve cardiac output. Cardiac output is a measure of the amount of blood pumped per time. When your cardiac output is high, you will feel energized and enjoy increased endurance during physical activities.
The body also needs vitamin K2 to regulate how it uses calcium to build healthy bones. This is a similar function to one of vitamin D3’s functions.
Hence, nutrition experts recommend taking D3 and K2 together because they both work to use calcium in the right places - the bones and not the arteries.
Why Not Natural Organic Vitamin D3 and K2 supplement will help you meet your daily recommended intake of vitamins D3 and K2. The twin combo will help you maintain strong bones, support your immune system, boost your mood, and support your cardiovascular health.
Below, we provide answers to some common questions surrounding using energy supplements.
Do vitamins help boost your energy?
Multiple research shows some particular vitamins play a critical role in the body’s ability to produce, store, and use energy, especially from the food you eat.
So, if you feel regularly low on energy or tired more often than not, taking vitamin supplements can help boost your energy.
What vitamin provides the most energy?
Considering their primary role in helping the cells’ energy-creating component, mitochondria, produce energy and break down carbohydrates and protein, you can consider B-complex vitamins as the vitamin that provides the most energy.
Which is better to take, B12 vitamin or B complex?
If you have specifically been diagnosed as vitamin B12 deficient, supplementing with B12 is a better option than taking B complex, or you can take a B12 on top of a B complex since it's not possible to "overdose" on B12 (your body simply excretes the excess in urine).
Otherwise, it is better to take B complex as this provides you with your daily needs of all eight B vitamins.
Do vitamins boost your energy level right away?
Vitamins do not boost your energy right away. The body is a network of multi-dependent cells, tissues, organs, and chemical compounds.
When you start taking energy vitamins, you kickstart a chain reaction dependent on multiple units. It takes time for every unit to be on the same page and start working optimally.
So, the process may take a few days to months, depending on your health baseline, when you begin taking the vitamins. It’s like exercise. You don’t build muscles in one day.
Takeaway: Kick fatigue and lethargy to the curb with energy-boosting vitamins
Feeling low on energy has many potential causes, but the most common is vitamin deficiencies.
Taking the right vitamins and minerals in the required daily units can help boost your energy.
These vitamins include B-complex, antioxidants, magnesium, vitamin D3, iron, Ashwagandha, melatonin, tyrosine, and L-Citrulline.Why Not Natural produces many of these energy boosting vitamin supplements. The supplements are safe, vegan-friendly, and organic. They will help you meet your daily recommended dose of these critical vitamins, despite your busy schedule and indoor lifestyle.