This post contains links through which we may earn a small commission should you make a purchase from a brand. This in no way affects our ability to objectively critique the products and brands we review.
Evidence Based Research To fulfill our commitment to bringing our audience accurate and insightful content, our expert writers and medical reviewers rely on carefully curated research.
Read Our Editorial Policy
It was quite a ride, early 2000s energy drinks, but the world is now wise to your jittery (and extremely unhealthy) ways.
In the interest of a calmer, but still more productive future, we curated this list of the 5 best energy supplements of 2023 with a focus on balanced, safe energy supplements that facilitate your body’s natural energy production instead of simply overclocking your motor with copious amounts of caffeine and sugar.
If you’re looking for a clean, effective energy drink that gives you a sustained boost without the crash—Hi-Health Metabolic Fusion takes our top spot in this regard—here are the best energy supplements on the market today.
|Hi-Health Metabolic Fusion||Capsule form; vegan friendly; plant-based metabolism boosters, antioxidants, nootropics, and more; ketones||$1.33/serving|
|Solaray Multi Energy||Capsule form; two dozen micronutrients; naturally sourced vitamins (rose hips, etc.); 8 B vitamins; caffeine free||$0.50/serving|
|Zhou Lite Up||Powder drink mix; stimulant-free; natural vasodilators and antioxidants; no artificial sweeteners||$0.87/serving|
|NOW Thyroid Energy||Capsule form; B-vitamins and ashwagandha; thyroid cofactors (selenium, zinc, and copper) enhance thyroid hormone release in the body||$0.44/serving|
|OLLY Daily Energy||Gummy form; caffeine free; fermented CoQ10 and Goji berry provide an energy boost and supporting nutrients (vitamin A, C, protein, antioxidants, etc.); 1g added sugar per gummy||$0.42/serving|
Best for: Busy/working folks who want a safe, crash-free energy supplement that comes with weight-loss benefits.
Hi-Health Metabolic Fusion sponsors a multi-fronted war on fatigue that savvily takes advantage of more than one of the body’s energy-producing mechanisms using the following ingredients:
The green tea and coffee bean extracts provide a strong shot of antioxidants, which help protect the brain against damage while improving cognition.
The calming amino acid L-theanine helps to take the jittery edge off of the generous, but measured helping of caffeine (150mg) infused into each serving.
The active ingredient in olive leaf extract (oleuropein), the bacopa extract, and the garcinia combine forces to naturally spin up your metabolism, promote weight loss, and even lower LDL (bad/low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol.
Finally, the BioPerine black pepper extract provides a potent brain-boosting effect, and is often used to enhance the absorption of other nutrients.
Hi-Health Metabolic Fusion hits three of the major energy production pathways we look for—brain detangling, classic pep (stimulation), and cellular energy production—all while staying clear of nasty ingredients.
Best for: Those who want the nutritional benefits of a multivitamin alongside the functional advantages of an energy-boosting supplement.
Too often, attempts to bridge the gap from multivitamin to energy supplement amount to a half-hearted sprinkling of extra B vitamins, but Solaray Multi Energy is our model for merging these two (multivitamin and energy supplement) the right way.
Of course, Solaray Multi Energy provides 8 B vitamins, but it also includes the following key micronutrients, to name a few:
Collectively, these nutrients cover all the major functional targets we want to see addressed by a multivitamin, including immune system health, vision, heart health, and more.
The lack of caffeine, while a con for those looking for that extra edge, makes sense for a twice-daily multivitamin, and the B vitamins at least partially make up for it.
You might miss the caffeine if you’re looking for a more intense burst of energy to get you through a workout, long workday, etc., but the other side of the trade-off is the advantage of a well-rounded multivitamin that still provides sustained, focused energy. This makes Solaray Multi Energy one of the best energy supplements for chronic fatigue syndrome and other long-term use cases.
Overall, Solaray Multi Energy is the best multivitamin + energy supplement we’ve seen to date, compromising very little on either front.
Best for: Anyone looking for a clean and effective pre-workout without the caffeine (or other stimulants).
Speaking of caffeine free, Zhou Lite Up took the spot for best caffeine-free pre-workout in our Best Pre-Workout for Women article.
Zhou Lite Up uses naturally sourced vasodilators like citrulline malate to increase blood flow to working muscles.
The fruit concentrates (tart cherry, bilberry, hawthorn berry) kick in a heaping helping of antioxidants to facilitate muscle recovery via inflammation control and other mechanisms.
Zhou Lite Up is clean (no artificial sweeteners or harsh preservatives) and, at two grams of carbs per single-scoop serving, keto friendly.
Best for: A clean, consistent energy boost for people with hypothyroidism.
Though a cardinal symptom, fatigue isn’t the only bane that low-thyroid folks have to deal with; hypothyroidism can also cause constipation, depression, decreased libido, and more.
Each person’s thyroid situation varies, and should be discussed with a physician, but in many cases, the hypothyroid crowd needs a way to supplement the key constituents of the thyroid hormone that they are deficient in—iodine and tyrosine.
While there are many iodine and tyrosine supplements out there, NOW Thyroid Energy is one of the few that also includes three cofactors (selenium, zinc, and copper) of enzymes that release thyroid hormones throughout the body.
This is a technical way of saying that selenium, zinc, and copper act as key facilitators in the reactions that allow the thyroid hormone to do its thing.
Also of note in the NOW Thyroid Energy ingredient list is a heavy shot of B-12 (60mcg/2500% RDA) and ashwagandha, an apt pairing for their complementary benefits (increased energy and stress reduction, respectively).
Finally, NOW Thyroid Energy takes our top spot for thyroid energy supplements because it’s clean, highly affordable, and backed up by NOW’s rigorous testing and sourcing standards.
Best for: Targeting energy production at the most fundamental level—the mitochondria of the cell—OLLY Daily Energy provides a caffeine-free route to sustained energy aided by Vitamin B12 (300mcg/12500% DV), Goji Berry Extract (100mg), and naturally fermented CoQ10 (30mg).
And hey, gummies.
CoQ10 stands for cofactor enzyme Q-10, an antioxidant produced in the body that protects the mitochondria.
While it’s the mitochondria that directly produces energy (in the form of ATP), since CoQ10 is so integral to the proper function of the mitochondria, a deficiency is very likely to result in a drop in energy.
Goji berry offers a nutrient-rich cocktail of vitamin A, vitamin C, protein, potassium, iron, and more, including plenty of antioxidants.
Each Olly Daily Energy gummy contains a below-average (1g) amount of added sugar in the form of glucose syrup and beet sugar.
If you’re looking for an affordably priced energy gummy that steers clear of the caffeine, OLLY Daily Energy is our top pick.
Along with most other B vitamins, B-12 is considered to be the best energy-boosting vitamin for its roles in cellular metabolism and red blood cell production.
You can use the ingredients in the above energy supplements as a model for the several ways to boost your energy, which include nootropics and adaptogens, stimulants, micronutrients like B vitamins, cellular energy enhancers like CoQ10, and more.
Of course, a balanced diet, sleep, and exercise are crucial to keeping a healthy energy level.
Because fatigue can result from so many different problems and mechanisms within the body, this is a very broad answer. Some of the most common nutritional deficiencies that cause fatigue include vitamin D, B12, and iron deficiency. Hypothyroidism is also a common cause.
This Harvard Health article goes into more depth about the link between micronutrient deficiency and fatigue.
Nutritional deficiencies, genetic factors, environmental factors (stress, etc.), mental health disorders (especially depression), and other factors can all cause fatigue in isolated or overlapping ways.
It’s a helpful practice to identify the suspected causes of your fatigue and address them one by one if it is safe and appropriate to do so given the context; changing your routine too drastically may obfuscate both the cause of the fatigue and the identity of the solution.
It’s not just what you eat, but how you eat—and more.
Consuming more whole-food-sourced vitamin B12 (chicken, fish, dairy, eggs, etc.) is a start, but it’s also important to avoid having large amounts of starchy foods in one sitting.
As always, optimizing your sleep (8 hours!) and exercise (at least 20-30 minutes a day) should help naturally increase your energy as well.
Finally, there are plenty of natural energy supplements you can take advantage of, such as several of those listed above.
Increased energy can be achieved through several mechanisms, including increasing oxygen to the brain, optimizing chemical messengers in the brain to enhance alertness, fueling the mitochondria to generate energy on a cellular level, stimulation, and more.
Plant-based nootropics are instrumental in promoting the above functions; understanding how to identify them in an ingredient list (and differentiate them from cheap stimulants) will help you discern between high-quality and low-quality energy supplements.
It’s important not to develop an unhealthy dependence on even high-quality energy supplements, as the core of your B12 (and other nutrient) intake should still come from whole food sources. Over-dependence on energy supplements can also foster bad habits, like staying up too late.
As always, make sure your energy supplement has a reasonable amount of caffeine (if any), little to no sugar, and high-quality ingredients that promote sustained energy through multiple mechanisms.
Subscribe now and never miss anything about the topics important to you and your health.