Food is the fuel our bodies need to keep functioning. Making the right dietary choices can prevent that feeling of running on empty. In order to maximize the nutrients in food and have enough time to digest them, you need to eat the right foods at the right time, say experts.
Eating a hearty breakfast and avoiding late night dining will not only provide more energy and reduce fatigue throughout the day, it will also boost your overall health and help disease.
Here are the 10 top strategies for optimizing your daily food choices to boost energy:
- Stick to unprocessed foods. Processed foods are full of preservatives, sodium, fat, and sugar that slow you down. Choose whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables to keep your energy levels steady, says Healthline.
- Drink non-caffeinated beverages. While coffee can give you that needed morning wakeup jolt, it’s a short-lived boost and won’t sustain your vitality throughout the day. Avoid energy drinks and sodas that are mostly refined sugar and can lead to health problems down the road as well as trigger fatigue.
- Stick to lean proteins. Choose lean cuts of meat, chicken, and fish to provide sustainable energy during the day. Healthline recommends choosing fish high in omega-3 fatty acids, like salmon and tuna, for their heart-healthy benefits.
- Include eggs. According to Medical News Today, whole eggs contain a variety of ingredients that boost energy levels including fats, protein, calcium, and vitamin A.
- Have a banana. Studies have found that eating bananas provides long lasting energy because of the potassium, fiber, and carbohydrates—conveniently bundled in a handy package!
- Go nuts with almonds. An afternoon snack of a handful of almonds will sustain you until dinner time. The combination of protein, fat, and fiber in almonds keeps your engine running longer because it provides a feeling of fullness and can help boost energy levels.
- Have a slice of watermelon. Dehydration can lead to fatigue, so enjoying watermelon during the day can increase mental alertness and well-being, says Medical News Today.
- Hail kale! This leafy green vegetable is chock full of vitamins, antioxidants, and iron. Since our red blood cells need iron to bring oxygen to every cell of the body, it’s important to include nutritious and iron-rich foods, such as kale or spinach, in our diets.
- Nibble on chia seeds. According to one study that involved endurance athletes, eating chia seeds enhanced their performance as well as sports drinks, says Healthline. A good way to enjoy their benefits is to sprinkle a couple of tablespoons of chia seeds into your morning smoothie or atop your yogurt.
- Eat your oats. A hearty bowl of oatmeal isn’t just a breakfast food ― it can provide fiber and energy any time during the day when your energy starts to lag. Nutritionists recommend steel-cut oats or old-fashioned oats to avoid extra sugar. You can mix equal amount of oats and water in a covered container and store the mixture overnight in the refrigerator for instant access to a healthy snack. Add a little milk and fresh berries and you have the perfect energy-boosting snack.
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