Medically Reviewed by Melinda Ratini, DO, MS on October 20, 2021

Snack on a Salad

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Leafy veggies like spinach and kale give you a vitamin B boost. Vitamin B is a part of your cells’ energy-making process.

Guzzle Water

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If you’re feeling droopy, you might need to drink more water. One sign of dehydration is fatigue.

Step Outside

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Not only will a change of scenery and some fresh air wake up your senses, the sun will help regulate your sleep-wake cycle. Try to get at least 30 minutes a day of natural sunlight -- an hour if you have insomnia.

Exercise

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Moving your body tells your cells you need more energy. Your body will rise to the task and start making more. Exercise also releases endorphins -- the “feel-good” hormones -- and gives you a bit of a natural mood boost.

Keep a Routine

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If you go to bed and wake up at the same times every day, your body will learn when it’s time to be alert and when it’s wind-down time.

Aromatherapy

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Certain smells can help jump-start your senses and may help you with focus, energy, and more. To feel more awake, try eucalyptus, lemon, or peppermint.

Pack in the Protein

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Instead of mindless, carb-heavy grazing to help you stay awake, choose foods that include some protein or healthy fat. They’ll stick with you longer and help you avoid a sugar crash.

Take a Break From Screens

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Feeling sleepy may be your eyes’ way of telling you they need a pause from focusing on screens. To avoid eyestrain, look off into the distance and away from your computer or phone regularly as you work.

Power Nap

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Sometimes your body just needs a sleep reset. A 15- to 30-minute shut-eye session can help you feel more alert and improve your mood.

Chew Gum

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Some studies show gum chewing can kick up your alertness, help you react faster, and improve your attention and boost productivity during the workday.

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Show Sources

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SOURCES:

Northwestern Medicine: “7 Ways to Wake Up Without Coffee.”

Salem Health: “How to Stay Awake Naturally.”

Sleep Foundation: “Caffeine and Sleep.”

University of Colorado Boulder: “5 ways to feel awake without caffeine.”

Sleep.org: “Snacks That May Keep You Awake.”