8 Energy-Boosting Foods

We all go through times when we don't have much energy, and it can be hard to pick yourself up, but there are plenty of ways to boost your energy. Although it might be tempting to reach for an instant energy pick-me-up like a chocolate bar or (dare I say it) an energy drink, these foods are a much healthier option, and the energy that they give you will last for longer than their unhealthy alternatives: 1. Porridge
Image credit: http://health.ninemsn.com.au/
Image credit: http://health.ninemsn.com.au/
We all know how great porridge is; it's hailed as the super breakfast because it's an excellent source of slow release energy, keeping your energy levels up throughout the day. Porridge contains a large amount of complex carbohydrates, which are carbs that get digested slowly (unlike other carbs). To make it even healthier, add water instead of milk when making your porridge. 2. Bananas
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Image credit: http://romanlosangelez.files.wordpress.com/
It's well-known that bananas are a great source of energy and, unlike energy drinks, eating a banana won't result in a "crash" when the energy runs out because bananas are a slow-release source of energy. Bananas contain three different sugars; glucose, fructose and sucrose. Glucose and fructose are quickly absorbed into the bloodstream, so they’ll give you an instant energy boost, while the sucrose acts slowly, keeping your blood sugar level stable. So bananas not only give you an instant boost, but they will also keep you going for far longer than a chocolate bar. 3. Broccoli, spinach, kale, and other leafy green vegetables
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Image credit: http://www.pureella.com/
These are all excellent sources of iron, and, as a lack of iron can result in low energy, it's important to eat plenty of iron-rich foods. There was a reason your parents used to always tell you to "eat your greens"! Kale is one of the best out of all of these; for more information on why, check out my recent article. 4. Almonds
Image credit: http://eatgoodfood.org/
Image credit: http://eatgoodfood.org/
Almonds have a high calorific content, meaning that they are packed full of energy. One cup of whole almonds contains 822 calories, according to the USDA National Nutrient Database. Almost half of those calories come from fat; the most calorie-dense of all food substances, but don't worry - it's healthy fat, which means that this tasty snack will boost your energy in no time. 5. Salmon
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Image credit: http://ichef.bbci.co.uk/
Not only is salmon great for weight loss and repairing muscles, but it's also high in essential omega-3 fatty acids, which are needed for energy production, brain activity, and circulation. 6. Eggs
Image credit: http://www.glosfoodanddrink.org/content/catalogue/10.jpg
Image credit: http://www.glosfoodanddrink.org/content/catalogue/10.jpg
Eggs are said to be a great breakfast, and there's a reason for that...they're packed full of protein and iron; both of which give you energy. They provide your body with sustainable energy throughout the day, so add some eggs to your meal and you will soon notice the difference in your energy levels. 7. Greek yoghurt
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Image credit: http://www.thefitnessfashionista.com/
Greek yoghurt is not only great for a healthy treat on a clean eating diet, but it's also a tasty way to boost your energy levels. It contains more protein than regular yoghurt, and, combined with the carbohydrates and healthy fat, it will give you a slow-release of energy. 8. Water
Image credit: http://www.turntrim.com/
Image credit: http://www.turntrim.com/
Many of us forget that a simple reason for low energy levels can be dehydration. Water is essential for keeping your body functioning at its optimum level, and if your body is not adequately hydrated, your energy levels can be affected. Keep a bottle of water with you at all times to keep topped up throughout the day.
Picture credit for featured image: http://www.bestpricenutrition.com/   Sources: http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/08/15/foods-that-boost-energy-_n_1779032.html http://www.marieclaire.co.uk/health/best/6653/5/energy-boosting-super-foods.html#index=5&slider=off http://m.activebeat.com/diet-nutrition/10-foods-to-reach-for-in-an-energy-slump/ http://ultimatesuperfoods.org/do-you-know-these-12-reasons-to-love-bananas/ http://fitandgluten-free.com/2014/05/25/13-reasons-why-you-have-no-energy/ http://www.ivlproducts.com/Health-Library/Health-Concerns/Anti-Aging/How-to-Boost-Energy-Levels-with-Greek-Yogurt/ http://www.runnersworld.com/nutrition-runners/foods-boost-energy http://www.livestrong.com/article/486400-do-almonds-give-you-energy/ http://completewellbeing.com/article/10-zing-foods/ http://www.fitday.com/fitness-articles/nutrition/healthy-eating/4-foods-that-will-give-you-natural-energy.html#b http://fitandgluten-free.com/2014/04/04/7-reasons-why-you-should-start-eating-kale/ http://fitandgluten-free.com/2014/04/05/is-dehydration-stopping-you-from-losing-weight/ http://www.businessinsider.com/10-foods-to-boost-energy-2013-9?op=1

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