Feeling tired can make it difficult to get through the day. When our energy levels are low, we may find it hard to concentrate, be productive, and feel motivated. Luckily, there are some simple dietary changes we can make to help boost our energy levels. Here are the top 5 energy-boosting foods to keep you going all day long.
One of the best breakfast options for sustained energy levels is oats. Oats are slow-digesting carbohydrates, which means they break down slowly and release energy gradually throughout the morning. Oats are also a good source of fiber, which is important for keeping us feeling full and preventing mid-morning hunger pangs. Add some fresh fruit, nuts, and seeds to your oats for an extra nutritional boost.
Green leafy vegetables are packed full of nutrients like iron, magnesium, and vitamins A, C, and E, which all contribute to healthy energy levels. These nutrients help to increase oxygen flow around the body and improve the function of our cells. Steamed broccoli, Brussels sprouts, or kale make a great side dish at lunch or dinner. Or, if you’re looking for a quick snack on the go, try a green smoothie made with spinach or kale.
Beans and Lentils
Beans and lentils are another great sources of slow-release carbohydrates. They’re also high in fiber and protein, which can help to keep us feeling fuller for longer. Add them to soups and stews or use them as a base for veggie burgers or curries.
Staying hydrated is essential for maintaining healthy energy levels throughout the day. When we’re even slightly dehydrated, we can start to feel fatigued, dizzy, and lightheaded. Aim to drink eight glasses of water a day, more if you’re exercising or it’s hot outside. If you find it hard to drink that much water, try adding some slices of lemon or lime or drinking herbal tea instead of plain water.
Who doesn’t love chocolate? Dark chocolate contains caffeine and antioxidants like flavonoids, which can give us a short burst of energy. But beware—eat too much chocolate and you may end up feeling sluggish later on due to the sugar crash! Stick to one or two squares of dark chocolate per day as a treat after lunch or dinner.
There are plenty of foods we can eat to help give us sustained energy throughout the day. Next time you’re feeling tired, reach for some oats at breakfast time or dark chocolate as an afternoon pick-me-up. And don’t forget to stay hydrated! Drinking plenty of water will help keep your energy levels up all day long.