Sometimes, you'd rather just stay in bed! Unfortunately, for most of us, that is simply not an option. Getting yourself up and going each day can be a real struggle -- even if you are a morning person. But, don't condemn yourself to a lifetime of morning fogginess! With a few simple tweaks, you can elevate your mood and be better prepared to take on the day! Making yourself feel like a morning person is easier than you might think. Whether you're in love with sleep or just got up on the wrong side of the bed, eating the right things in the morning can completely transform your day. That's right, a better mood is just a breakfast away! To get your day started on the right foot, add these foods to your breakfast routine:
1. Smoked Salmon
Salmon is an oily fish which makes it an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids. Various studies have found that omega 3s help reduce anxiety and depression. Lowering anxiety levels can also dampen the effects of the stress hormone cortisol, helping you feel more at ease and potentially reducing the amount of fat you carry around your belly! If you find yourself pressed for time in the mornings, try whipping up this quick and delicious Smoked Salmon with Avocado Spread
It shouldn't surprise you to see eggs on this list! Eggs pack a pretty powerful nutritional punch. Eggs are not only an excellent source of protein, they are loaded with important vitamins and minerals your body needs to function at its best. These include vitamins B2, B6, B12, and D, calcium, copper, zinc and selenium! Because of their high protein content, eggs will fill you up and keep you feeling satisfied until lunchtime! This will allow you to stay focused on the tasks at hand without the annoying distraction of a rumbling stomach! To add a little excitement to your eggs, why not double down on the mood boosters by whipping up this Smoked Salmon Avocado Egg Wrap?
Oats are full of fiber. Fiber can promote gut health while adding bulk to your diet and stabilizing blood sugar. This means you won't have that dreaded mid-morning energy slump that leaves you feeling like you want to crawl under your desk for a nap or grab that danish from the break room! How you eat these oats is up to you. You can whip up a nice bowl of oatmeal or add some to your smoothies! The choice is yours!
4. Beans & Pulses
Like oats, beans and pulses are full of fiber. When your digestion isn't working properly, it can leave you feeling sluggish, lethargic, and generally cruddy. None of this is conducive to being in a good mood. Adding chickpeas, black beans, or lentils to your morning can help keep your system moving and put a little pep in your step. Why not combine oats and lentils onto one dish? Try this Loaded Oatmeal Lentil bowl!
5. Dried Fruit
Low iron levels are common for women. This can make you feel tired and depressed. One way to boost iron levels is through dried fruit. You want to keep your serving sizes in control because they can be high in sugar but adding some raisins or apricots to a bowl of yogurt or a smoothie can help. Better yet, add apricots AND spinach to your smoothie for an extra dose of iron!
Dehydration has a profoundly negative effect on the body. This can include a feeling of haziness and an inability to focus! Melon, because of its high water content, is a great way to supplement your daily water intake. Try adding some to a smoothie or cut it into chunks for a bright and tasty breakfast.
7. Orange Juice
Vitamin C keeps your immune system healthy and also helps your body to absorb iron from plant based foods. Fighting off energy zapping bugs and optimizing iron absorption is a sure way to wake up feeling fresh and energized.
As we've said before, slow digestion can make you feel drained and tired. Whole fat, natural yogurt is full of active bacteria cultures that go a long way to promoting healthy bacteria in your gut. Many recent studies have suggested that an unhappy gut can contribute to bad moods and depression. So, help the good bacteria along by having a bowl of yogurt or adding a few dollops to your morning smoothie. Just avoid flavored or sweetened yogurts as the extra sugars will be counterproductive.
9. Raw Cacao
Chocolate lovers, it's time to rejoice! Raw cacao is a pure from of cocoa that is both high in fiber and magnesium. Magnesium plays a big role in many of your body's functions including the conversion of food into energy. Raw cacao also contains the mood enhancer phenethylamine (or PEA) so throw a tablespoon in your smoothie or oatmeal for a delicious, elevating start to your day.
For more simple, healthy, and creative ways to use these foods, check out the BodyRock Meal Plan! What do you eat in the morning to get your day started? Share your tips with us!