Feeling rundown and exhausted? Do you turn to sugar and or caffeine to booster your slumping energy reserves? Fatigue breaks us down physically and emotionally and wreaks havoc on the immune system, making us more susceptible to illness, depression, and even chronic conditions like heart disease. Moreover, proper nutrition and the timing of what you eat can do wonders to make you feel alert and powerful,
One of the simplest ways to get a boost: Adding lemon to water. It transforms regular H20 into a natural energy drink that is packed with electrolytes, which are critical for cells to produce energy. Hydration in general is key for a mood boost.
The natural sugar in fruit provides a quick pick-me-up when you’re dragging and helps keep blood levels steady because it’s packed with fiber. Make an energizing breakfast smoothie with blueberries (helps you focus), strawberries (high in vitamin C, which helps turn fat to energy) and yogurt (rich in magnesium, which helps regulate the release of energy). Or toss in a tropical fruit like pineapple, which contains iodine to help control how quickly your body burns energy. Not a smoothie person? Fruits with peels, like bananas or apples, are good choices to take to work or when you’re on the go.
Cashews, almonds, and hazelnuts are high in magnesium, which plays a key role in converting sugar to energy. They’re also filled with fiber to keep your blood sugar levels even and protein to stave off hunger. Keep a bag of mixed nuts or trail mix in your purse or desk drawer to stay energetic all day. Nibbling a square of dark chocolate as a post-lunch dessert is good for you. It contains the natural stimulant theobromine, similar to caffeine, which boosts your energy and your mood.
Carbohydrates provide 60 percent of the energy required to make your body go, and whole grains are packed with complex carbs (the good kind!), which are full of vitamins and minerals. Eating whole grains can prevent a surge in blood sugar after your next meal, according to a study in the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism, which means fewer energy crashes than when you eat refined carbohydrates in sugary or heavily processed snacks. Start your day with oatmeal or a high-fiber cereal to stay full until lunch, or snack on whole-grain crackers or granola bars for an afternoon boost.