Need a boost? 6 energy zappers you can eliminate right now

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PHOENIX -- It seems like everyone is tired these days. Are you? Health and wellness educator Syd Hoffman said you might be doing things that drain your energy without even realizing it.

Hoffman says some simple changes can uncork a wellspring of energy you never knew you had.

First, as convenient as processed foods can be, they are not good for you. Hoffman advises her students to avoid anything in a package (at least as much as possible) and stick with what she calls "live foods" like fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and whole grains.

Because variety is the spice of live, she also suggests you try a new live food every 10 days.

Another energy zapper, according to Hoffman, is the belief that a true workout requires hours at the gym. She says a mere 10 minutes of moderate exercise will fire you up, energizing you for two hours.

She says you should do what you love and mix it up. Routines get old and boring so you want to surprise your body. A good way to keep at it is to enlist the help of a dedicated exercise partner. If you're responsible to somebody, you're more likely to stick to it.

Next is something most of us pride ourselves on -- multitasking. Hoffman says there's really no such as multitasking. What you're really doing, according to Hoffman, is switch-tasking and not only does it waste energy, it stresses you out which adds to belly fat.

Speaking of getting more done, if you're sleeping less to do more, you're putting your heart at risk, not to mention zapping your energy for the next couple of days. Not only should you try to get in at least six consecutive hours a night, you also should try to maintain a consistent sleep schedule,

To that end, you might want to avoid caffeine, spicy or sugary foods, red meat and citrus before bed. If sleep eludes you, try having a tablespoon of raw unsalted almond butter or a banana.

Few things are more draining than being around negative people. They are energy vampires and they will suck you dry. Your attitude is the most important decision you make every day. Choose to socialize with upbeat people and you'll pick up what they're putting down.

Finally, we all know how important it is to drink plenty of water every day. Coffee and tea don't count.

The author of "All-Day Energy: 100 Ways to Boost Your Energy…Now!," Hoffman will be part of this year's Arizona Conference for Woman on Sept. 8.