We’re a tired population. Most days it would seem that getting out of bed is a job in itself. But where has all the energy gone? Between work, caring for our families and other obligations life throws our way, the best time of the day, often times, is finally returning back to bed.
But life shouldn’t be that way! We shouldn’t be waking up just to wish to sleep again. We need to take back our energy. To do this we need to eat for energy.
Food is fuel, plain and simple. Without it we’d have even less energy than we do now. But by eating the best foods for energy, we can begin to feel better and no longer be fazed by the “Monday morning” blues or even the “mid-week” blues, either.
When it comes to feeling energetic we require fast energy foods, so if you’re wondering what are the best foods to eat for energy, look no further than the list below.
We all know the most important meal of the day is breakfast. Without it you will find yourself hungry, drained, and opting for unhealthy food choices to feed the void. Instead of making a poor breakfast decision or skipping it altogether, opt for some of these best foods for energy.
If you’re looking for power foods for breakfast, stick with eggs, fruit and yogurt. Eggs are packed with protein which will not only give you energy but will keep you fuller for longer. Protein does not cause your sugar levels to spike, so in turn you end up with steady, all-day energy with no crash – unlike too much coffee! Eggs also contain many nutrients good for energy as well, like B vitamins. Eggs are definitely part of fast energy foods with lasting power.
Furthermore, berries and oranges are also make the healthy energy foods list because they, too, are loaded with essential vitamins and nutrients to keep us energized throughout the day. If you pair some berries with a low-fat yogurt you have the added benefits of protein – more so if it’s the Greek variety.
Around 3:30 p.m. our sugar takes a drop which can have us leaving quite drained. To fuel ourselves in the afternoon, stick with nuts, a square of dark chocolate and unsalted, unbuttered popcorn.
Nuts contain protein, and protein is essential for steady energy. Dark chocolate has many benefits when it comes to health, so having a square a day – or 3.6 ounces – isn’t bad for you. In fact, research has discovered that dark chocolate can benefit your heart. A good heart means better blood flow which translates to more energy.
Lastly, popcorn is a great whole grain packed with fiber. Fiber helps us feel full and keeps us regular. When it’s easy for us to “go” we remove all the waste that gets built up through what we ingest. Plus, no one enjoys constipation, so don’t feel guilty enjoying some air-popped popcorn as a fast energy food.
If you’re diabetic, you know that maintaining healthy blood sugar is important. Because of spikes and drops in blood sugar, you may feel drained more often. Finding best foods for energy is key for overall good health. Better yet, finding fast energy foods that also don’t impact your blood sugar is also highly important.
For sugar control and quick energy foods for diabetics, enjoy quinoa, apples and broccoli. Quinoa is an ancient grain packed with nutrients, especially for diabetics. Quinoa contains high amounts of protein – which we know won’t cause sugar spikes – as well as essential vitamins and nutrients. Incorporate quinoa in a power food recipe by adding it to salads and soups.
Research published in the Journal of Functional Foods revealed enjoying an apple every day can help reduce bad cholesterol. Additionally, Harvard School of Public Health found enjoying apples more than five times a week could reduce the risk of diabetes by 23 percent.
Broccoli, and other cruciferous vegetables, can help maintain proper heart health. Research has found eating cruciferous vegetables can reduce the risk of death by cardiovascular disease. An easy power food recipe for broccoli would be to either roast or boil them. By roasting them, you can add herbs and spices to bring out the flavor.
If you’re in a time crunch and heading straight to the gym, make sure you’re still enjoying these quick energy foods beforehand. Fast energy foods right before working out include water, nuts and whole grains. Because at the gym you’ll be burning a lot of calories, you can enjoy fast energy foods that provide a bit more.
It’s always important to properly hydrate yourself, but more so before a workout. Drink at least 500 ml of water before a workout or 250 ml 30 minutes before. You’ll be sweating a lot more so properly hydrating before, during and after is vital. Water also works to promote energy because it helps carry nutrients throughout your body. Foods that are high in water, like watermelon, are also beneficial to enjoy as quick energy foods before the gym.
Nuts, as we mentioned, have protein, fat and carbohydrates – all the necessities to get you through your workout. Enjoying a handful prior to a workout will give you the lasting power to get through your cardio and strength training. Peanut butter is also good to enjoy post-workout to replenish sore muscles.
And whole grains, not bleached white bread, is part of the power food list. Our bodies do require carbohydrates to function, but some carbs are better than others. Whole grains take longer to digest and as such provide longer-lasting energy.
Whether you’re looking for quick energy foods before the gym or quick energy foods for runners, these top three choices will definitely do the trick!
If your energy levels have been in the dumps, enjoying power food recipes can really give you the boost you need. Whether you need the energy for the gym, work, or hanging out with friends and family, enjoying fast energy foods can really help.
Essentially, though, power foods consist of whole, natural foods which should be a staple in any diet, not just an energy-boosting one. Whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean meats and nuts should be part of your everyday eating for optimal good health – but we’ll definitely take the added bonus of more energy as well!
So now that you know the power foods list, what will you do with your extra energy?