Writer and Certified Health Coach from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, Lee Holmes, reveals the 10 Best Foods
to help you avoid that 4pm energy slump.
Listen to your body to determine what will work for you. It might be one of these foods, it might even be all of them!
Eating raw, unsalted nuts provides your body with a nutrient rich, unprocessed, energy boost. For best results, soak the nuts overnight. Soaking the nuts activates the germination or sprouting process. This increases the nutrient content and makes them easier to digest.
Adding natural goat's milk yogurt to your breakfast, salad or next curry dish can give you a nice boost in calcium and probiotics. Probiotics are a good bacteria found in yogurt and they can enhance the immune system and aide in the microflora of the gut. Probiotics keep your gut healthy which helps digestion and allows you to get the most value from the food you eat, which in turn combats fatigue.
Omega-3 fatty acids help lower cholesterol which reduces the risk of heart disease. Salmon is loaded with Omega-3s. Not only does salmon contain these heart helpers, it is also loaded with protein, vitamin B6, niacin, and riboflavin. These help you to convert food to energy, giving you a natural, healthy boost that will keep you awake during your work day.
Iron is essential for transporting oxygen in the blood stream. 1 cup of mushrooms can provide close to 50% of your daily serving of iron. Lack of oxygen supply to our major organs can make us feel lethargic and fatigued. Mushrooms will boost your iron which will increase the ability of the cells in your blood to properly fuel your organs.
Spinach is high in iron, magnesium, and potassium. Magnesium is key in the body's ability to produce energy. When paired with potassium, magnesium enables effective digestion in the stomach as well as regulation of nerve and muscle functions. Add spinach to salad or your eggs in the morning. When you think you've added enough spinach, add a bit more. It can only help.
Pumpkin and Sunflower Seeds
If you have a quarter cup of pumpkin seeds a day, you will hit half of your daily recommendation of magnesium. As with spinach, magnesium helps in bone, protein and fatty acid formation. Magnesium also helps maintain calcium levels and relax muscles.
Iron, potassium, magnesium, vitamin C and vitamin D are all helpful in boosting energy and preventing you from feeling tired. Guess what? Sweet potatoes contain all of these helpers. Sweet potatoes are super versatile so you can try them grilled, mashed, steamed, roasted, in a salad, in a curry or all by themselves. Whatever works for you.
Water is absolutely essential for human daily functioning. Water carries oxygen and nutrients to our cells. Lack of oxygen and nutrients can make us feel tired and nauseated. It is recommended that adult women drink 8 cups of water a day and for adult men, 10 cups. Need help getting your proper water intake, try having a glass before every meal.
Fresh, Seasonal Produce
Seasonal produce contains the maximum nutrient potential possible. Meaning, seasonal produce contains the the most nutrients it will ever contain. Storing or transporting produce decreases nutrient potential. By eating seasonally, you will get the biggest nutrient reward which should make you feel more awake after eating.
Eggs are the highest source of complete protein and contain 30% of your daily requirement. They are great after exercise to ensure your muscles recover properly and your body stays ready for whatever comes next.