Man driving a car alone

8 Tips on How to Stay Awake While Driving

Stay alert while driving with organic energy shots like Ethan's! Discover essential tips for a safe and energized journey on the road.

Despite nodding off and struggling to keep their eyes open, many overly confident drivers still get behind the wheel of a car ⸺ ignoring the warning signs of fatigue. Falling asleep behind the wheel is often taken less seriously than driving drunk but can, unfortunately, have the same consequences. Even if you don’t actually fall asleep, the chances you’ll swerve off the road and hit something or someone are high. Taking good care of your body by maintaining healthy habits can help prevent drowsy driving. Some healthy habits include getting enough sleep, eating well, and using natural caffeine sources like Ethan’s clean energy shots to enhance your focus, energy levels, and attention. Keep reading to discover the dangers of driving drowsy and how to stay awake for safer steering.

The Dangers of Drowsy Driving

Whether you’re exhausted from a late night shift, binging TV shows, or staying up with a newborn, the dangerous effects can be the same. Driving while tired can cause accidents that increase your car insurance policy and, in tragic cases, cause harm and fatality.

In 2017, drowsy driving led to  91,000 crashes, 50,000 injuries, and almost 800 deaths, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation (1). And sleep deprivation doesn’t just lead to falling asleep on the road but also impacts your brain function and decision-making skills. A 2023 review published in the Nature and Science of Sleep saw significant sleep reductions in driving performance after a single night of four or five hours of sleep (2). So, you may be more apt to make riskier decisions behind the wheel when you’re short on shut-eye. Here are some ways to remain alert on any car ride.

8 Tips for Staying Awake and Alert While Driving

1. Get sufficient sleep

Keep your brain functioning at its best by getting a full night of rest. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), adults need at least seven hours of sleep every night (3). But getting sufficient sleep can be easier said than done. To increase your chances of proper slumber, try exercising regularly, avoid electronics an hour before bed, and make your bedroom an environment of quiet, dim light, and relaxation. The National Sleep Foundation says drivers who sleep for seven to nine hours at night are less likely to drive drowsy and stay safe (4).

2. Fuel up with nutritious food

Certain foods are more likely to zap your energy than others, so eating nutrient-dense foods can equip your body to stay alert while driving. You’ll want to eat a combination of foods to help keep your blood sugars balanced versus spiking, leading to an energy crash and sleepiness. Foods high in carbohydrates, like muffins and cookies that lack protein and fiber, can lead to these blood sugar spikes. But, if you instead ate half of the muffin with boiled eggs and blueberries, offering protein and fiber, you can improve your blood sugar balance and promote sustained energy over time.

3. Caffeine up

It doesn’t take much time for caffeine to kick in, so drinking Ethan’s clean energy shot 15 to 30 minutes before driving can help boost your alertness and prevent drowsiness during your trip.  Ethan’s clean energy shot contains a unique proprietary blend of natural caffeine derived from real plants that give you the focus you need to reach your destination,  minus the jitters.

4. Hydrate yourself

It’s no surprise water is essential to life, but did you know falling short of your water needs could impact your driving? According to a 2019 review published in Nutrients, dehydration can affect alertness and fatigue, two things everyone needs on the road (5). The National Academy of Medicine encourages 13 cups of water daily for healthy men and nine cups for healthy women (6). Filling up a water bottle with ice-cold water and taking it with you wherever you go can help. Moreover, snacking on water-rich foods such as yogurt, strawberries, and tomatoes can enhance hydration, too.

5. Stimulate your mind

Listening to music or an audiobook or streaming your favorite podcast may activate your mind for wakefulness in the driver’s seat.

6. Chew gum

A stick of gum may go beyond freshening your breath but help you drive if you’re sleepy by keeping you more attentive, according to BioMed Research International (7). One older, small study of 50 people found gum chewing helped improve fatigue (8).

7. Take breaks 

According to the CDC, frequent yawning, lane drifting, and difficulty remembering parts of your drive are telltale signs that you’re driving drowsy (9). Eliminate these risks by ensuring you’re taking breaks, no matter how short your journey may seem.

8. Open the windows or crank the A/C

Letting the windows down or blasting your air conditioning may create enough noise and stimulation to prevent falling asleep while driving.


Drowsy driving is dangerous and can cause accidents, injuries, and even death. According to the National Sleep Foundation, 95 percent of Americans agree that driving while sleepy is risky, but many do it anyway (4). You can best prevent behind-the-wheel slumber by providing your body with adequate sleep, healthy foods, and natural caffeine sources like Ethan’s clean energy shots to boost your focus and alertness.


Ethan’s clean energy shot delivers 150 milligrams of caffeine, about the same as drinking 1.5 cups of coffee. You can reap the benefits of staying awake if you enjoy your shot before your driving trip.

Authored By

Gabrielle McPherson, MS, RDN, LDN

Gabrielle McPherson, MS, RDN, LDN, is a freelance health and nutrition writer. She holds a bachelor’s degree in nutrition and dietetics and a master’s degree in medical dietetics with a pediatric nutrition emphasis. She’s spent several years educating and helping families boost their nutrition in practical, simple, and realistic ways. Her work has appeared in a variety of publications, including EatingWell Magazine, Once Upon a Farm, HappiestBaby, Healthline and more.

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