Are you relying on ‘counterfeit’ sources of energy to fuel you?

Although diet is still the primary source of our energy and vitality, a poor diet can obviously affect us negatively as well. Whilst western society seems to be more stringent in standards of food production and packaging, the reality is that consumers today are overwhelmed with the range of colourful choices on each isle of the grocery – we hardly have time to read the product label.

Another contemporary trend rampant in today’s society is the reliance on ‘counterfeit’or fake sources of energy to keep going. Unfortunately, as most people are busy in the daily lives, they often opt for unhealthy foods or energy products which provide short-lived energy fixes that largely rely on glucose, a type of simple carbohydrate.

Additionally I refer to the addictive drinks like coffee, Red Bull, Coca-Cola and alcohol. I have had personal experience being addicted to each one of these drinks at different stages of my life and it is amazing how these addictions are so widespread in modern society.

I certainly don’t mean to make anyone feel guilty; I used to consume three cans of Diet Coke a day in my early career as a busy junior doctor. I even switched my addiction over to regular Coke after I read about the many side-effects of aspartame in Diet Coke.

It was only in 2012 that I not only quit regular Coke, but all sugary drinks – cold turkey. And boy, do I feel better for it.

What made me quit? I felt quite ill one day after what initially seemed like no apparent reason at all. I woke up one morning with nausea and generally feeling rotten (that’s a common medical complaint by the way).

It was during my days as a corporate executive and as I struggled to cope with my daily duties, it was only late that evening when I realised that all I had to drink for the prior 24 hours was Gatorade, artificial juices and other sugary drinks…..…I had not drank a single glass of plain water all day!

This just compounded a frightening memory many years earlier where I woke up one morning with pounding heart palpitations after consuming several Red Bull energy drinks the night before. Needless to say, this episode was the last straw (pardon the pun) and my love-hate relationship with sugary drinks was finally over.

The moral of the story is that we are ingesting some very toxic liquids in our bodies, under the guise of needing them to provide us with energy. The actual reality is that the caffeine or taurine content in these drinks only provide a temporary uplift, before we feel tired again.

Since giving up these drinks, I have never felt more energetic in my life. It really comes down your own self perception of your body and how much you value yourself.

Think about a party, where free alcohol is being served. For those that don’t value their body highly, they consume as much of the free alcohol as possible, in the shortest amount of time. I know because I used to be that person in my 20’s.

However, I thought my behaviour was driven by the desire to have fun, I did not realise that it was also subconsciously driven by low self worth of my body. Nowadays, I value my body more and prioritise my body higher than free alcohol, junk food, etc. Once again, it health of our body is really linked to our emotions and thought patterns about ourselves.

How do you perceive your own body?

Dr Avnesh Ratnanesan
About the Author: Dr Avnesh Ratnanesan

Dr Avi is a medical doctor with broad healthcare sector experience including hospitals, biotech, pharmaceuticals and the wellness industry. He is a leading expert who coaches and consults to senior executives, entrepreneurs, practitioners, organisations and governments.



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