A busy lifestyle and hectic work schedule does not always allow you to eat balanced meals or to get enough sleep. As a result, a lack of energy, especially in the afternoons, is a likely consequence. Vitamin and beverage manufacturers have attempted to capitalize on the need for more daytime energy by offering products packed with a variety of supplements. Some vitamins, minerals, substances and plants are able to generate energy within your body.
Vitamin B6, or pyridoxine, is required to derive glucose from both amino acids and glycogen, which is the storage form of glucose located in your liver and muscles. Glucose is the primary short-chain molecular utilized by your cells to produce energy.
Biotin, or vitamin B7, is essential for cellular growth, the synthesis of fatty acids and the metabolism of amino acids. Like vitamin B6, biotin is required to derive glucose from amino acids, a process known as gluconeogenesis.
Vitamin B12 is required for the synthesis of DNA and the formation of red blood cells. Healthy red blood cells are needed to transport oxygen to your other cells, which is used to oxidize glucose within your mitochondria and create energy. Vitamin B12 is also involved in fatty acid and protein metabolism, other methods of energy production.
Magnesium is a mineral involved in energy production. According to the Agricultural Research Service, too little magnesium makes your body work harder, which leads to early fatigue. Magnesium is also important for muscle contraction and relaxation, which can help you deal with physical and emotional stress.
NADH, or nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, is a natural nutrient often used by those who suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome. NADH stimulates production of ATP molecules, which are energy transfer and storage substances used to power many of your body's processes.
L-Carnitine is an amino acid that helps transport fatty acids into your cell's mitochondria, which are then converted into energy and utilized mainly by your muscles, as cited by the University of Maryland Medical Center. It is produced by your liver and kidneys and stored in the skeletal muscles, heart, brain and sperm.
Panax ginseng, or Asian ginseng, has been prized for its energy-boosting properties for centuries. According to MedlinePlus, panax ginseng is used for work efficiency, physical stamina and athletic endurance. Some people use ginseng for chronic fatigue syndrome, while others use it to help them cope with stress and as a general tonic for improving well-being.
Coenzyme Q-10 is a compound found naturally in your cell's mitochondria and is involved in making ATP molecules. ATP serves as your cell's major energy source and drives a number of biological processes, including muscle contraction.
Guarana is a plant native to the Amazon and common in Brazil. The fruit of guarana is considered an effective energy booster, mainly because it contains about twice the caffeine found in coffee beans, according to "Medical Herbalism: The Science Principles and Practices of Herbal Medicine."
- "Human Biochemistry and Disease;" Gerald Litwack; 2008
- "The Vitamins, Third Edition;" Gerald F. Combs; 2007
- Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture: "Lack Energy? Maybe It's Your Magnesium Level"
- University of Maryland Medical Center: L-Carnitine
- MedlinePlus: Panax Ginseng
- "Medical Herbalism: The Science Principles and Practices of Herbal Medicine"; David Hoffmann; 2003