Brisk fall weather should put some pep in your step, but if you’re dragging, a few pesky offenders could be to blame. Try the science-proven fixes below to restore energy fast!
Toss pillows with tennis balls.
Sleeping on a pillow packed with dust mites can trigger all-day grogginess for 90 percent of us, especially in the fall, when we spend an average of 53 extra minutes a night cozied up in bed with the invisible pests. (Yikes!)
The fix: “Tumble-dry that pillow!” says Yelena Kopyltsova, M.D., an allergist at ENT and Allergy Associates in Astoria, New York. Fluffing pillows for 15 minutes on high heat with a couple of tennis balls was shown to kill 100 percent of exhaustion-triggering dust mites in an Australian study. (Block new infestations with a mite-proof pillow cover, like this one from Linenspa, $12.99 on Amazon .)
Stash slippers by the door.
“Mold spores love wet conditions,” says Dr. Kopyltsova, and fallen autumn leaves make the perfect breeding ground. “Damp leaves harbor mold spores, and these allergens are sticky.” She notes that they especially love to hitch a ride inside of shoes. Once indoors, prolonged contact with lurking leaf-mold spores can sap your energy, pushing your immune system to a tipping point of overall fatigue.
The fix: Deny leaf-mold spores entry by placing a storage basket filled with cozy slippers by your most-used door. It’ll make it easy to swap out your shoes when you get home. Also smart: changing out of yard-work clothes and into fresh loungewear ASAP.
Let in a little air.
“When we keep windows sealed up tight in the fall, we don’t air out moisture inside our home, and this allows spores to colonize,” says Dr. Kopyltsova. “These spores become airborne and trigger allergy symptoms.”
The fix: Crack a window for two minutes before bed. Research shows letting an autumn breeze sweep through your home whisks away as much as 45 percent of energy-draining indoor toxins.
This story originally appeared in our print magazine.