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Do you feel an energy slump at the end of the day? What do you do then, reach out for your caffeine laden drinks or worse still, reach out for those fizzy sugary drinks? I did that too! Yes, guilty as charged! Whenever I felt drained of energy, my cup of java seemingly restored my energy levels for some time and then it nose-dived again. My energy levels kept wavering on a scale from 0 to 10.
So, how do you try to push your energy levels towards 10? My go-to option is energy food. Whatever the reason you need to recharge your body’s batteries with, you should think of not only foods, but the right foods! Making the right food choices is the first thing to do to replenish your dwindling energy resources.
The Top 10 Energy Foods to make you feel Energetic and Agog-Natural Energy Boosters
Caffeine and sugar giveyou high energy, only to come crashing down after a few hours. So if you are looking for sustained energy, try to feast on foods which are a combination of complex carbs, protein, and fiber. The energy boosting foods listed here can be your go-to foods to beat fatigue; good clean foods that can nourish your body in the right way. Stock them up!
1. Bananas- An integral part of your list of quick energy foods
It is time you went bananas on this versatile fruit. The fact that it is packed with potassium andis full of fibre and vitamin B6 will enable you to skip your energy drinks filled with empty calories. The banana is such an on-the-go food! I mean, all you do is just peel it and eat it. You can also make it fancier by topping it with peanut butter or almond butter. Freeze it to make your own natural ice-cream or put it into your blender to make a perfect milk shake! What’s not to love?
2. Lemon water- One of the best foods for energy
A simple drink, but packs in so many nutrients. My mornings always start with this amazing drink and hopefully yours will too, when you get to hear about its ah-mazing benefits! Your H2O gets a major boost with electrolytes and it helps produce more energy. It is also true that the more you hydrate yourself, the lesser chances of you feeling fatigued.
3. Dark Chocolate- Part of your must-have energy snacks list
Chocolates are food for your soul. Well, at least to me they are! But with time, I have slowly turned myself into a dark chocoholic! It not only satisfies my hard-to-please taste buds, but it is also very healthy. I am all for nibbling on a square piece of dark chocolate post lunch, it works as my dessert too! What makes it to the list of energy snacks? It is the presence of the natural stimulant the obromine, which is quite similar to caffeine, that elevates your mood and makes you really happy!
4. Whole-grains- Foods that give energy and stamina
Are you on a low-carb or a no-carb diet? Well, it may be one of the reasons for you feeling so low on energy. Carbohydrates are instant pick-me-ups, and provide 60 percent of the energy that keeps your body going. Whole grains have great nutrients to boast of as they are packed with complex carbs which are great for your health, and are rich in vitamins and minerals. It also controls those blood-sugar surges after the main meal.
Another good word for complex carbs isthat though it energises you, it does not bring down your energy crashing down like gorging on simple carbs does. My eternal go-to complex carbs laden breakfast is oatmeal. Add some good fats on it in the form of nuts and you are good to go!
Pssst……I also love to top it off with almond butter to make it a great look-forward-to-a-great-breakfast every single day. With the right breakfast in my tummy, I forget about any afternoon slumps! If you are not such a big oatmeal fan, you can have millets, amaranth, quinoa or whole-grain toast! There you go, almost like an inviting breakfast buffet!
5. Kale- This veggie makes it to the list of healthy foods that give you energy
I agree, not a great food to have when your stomach screams ice-cream post an afternoon slump! But there is a reason nutritionists go all gaga over this nutrient rich veggie! This leafy green veggie is a powerhouse full of fiber and antioxidants, which results in a super-duper energy boost. And, if that wasn’t enough, kale also helps you bust that stress.
6. Hard- boiled eggs-Show some love to the natural energy foods, the protein-packed eggs!
When I am short on time in the mornings, I keep some hard-boiled eggs on the side to keep my hunger pangs away. What is it about eggs that makes them such an energy-booster? They are packed with the amino acid tyrosine, which improves alertness and perks you up like no tomorrow. So why only hard-boiled and why not poached or fried? Simple, because it is a healthier choice and keeps all its nutrients intact. Also, eat that yolk too, saturated fat is actually good for you!
7. Apples- One of the best foods for energy
Yes, apples do keep the doctor away in more ways than one. Also, they give you tonnes of energy to tide over the entire day. It is a hunger-slayer too, as it is full of fiber and takes longer to digest. If you are looking particularly at fruits for a quick pick-me-up, then apples are certainly the way to go. You can combine this fruit with good fats too to keep you satiated for longer. A string of cheese or nut butter, either of the two work just fine. Snack on them when you are hungry, also when you are low on energy and want an instant pick-me-up.
8. Beans- Your absolute go-to quick energy food
Not only will beans keep you feeling full and satisfied for longer, they can also avoid the mid-afternoon slump. Thehigh protein content stabilizes your blood sugar levels, which is why you feel refreshed and energised. Also, the complex carbohydrates keep you energized and provide a continuous supply of energy for the body and the brain.
9. Chia seeds- Nuts and seeds should be a big part of your energy diet
This tiny powerhouse of nutrients is very sprinkle-friendly! That’s right, you can sprinkle these healthy seeds into right about anything to double its nutrient levels. For example, you can sprinkle it on your yogurt or smoothies and fuel up your energy resources for the rest of the day.
Chia seeds are constituted of a great ratio of protein, fiber and fats, and the icing on the cake is that they arereally low-carb as well. They keep your insulin levels steady and prevent cravings from rearing their ugly head at inappropriate times. Chia seeds are, as they say, any health connoisseurs delight! I love it in my smoothies for my 4 PM snack. You can also substitute chia with sabja seeds. Nutrient wise, as well as looks wise, sabja seeds are certainly chia’s long lost twin.
10. Tea- The perfect food that gives you energy in the morning
If your love affair with tea does not seem to be ending anytime soon, there is some good news! Tea, specifically green tea which contains caffeine, also contains a compound called thymine that helps you stay alert and fresh, which is why it is the perfect food to give you energy in the morning.
Meanwhile, did you know it is a great way to burn belly fat too? Green tea is thus, not only a great food to give you energy, but also helps incinerate fat!
Perfect Recipes made with High Energy Dense Foods
Now that you have the perfect list of eat this, not that of most energetic foods, concoct your recipes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner to keep yourself fresh and energised throughout the day. Here are some great recipes to help you start!
1. Dark Chocolate Oats Fudge
Are you game for a breakfast which sounds like dessert, looks like one, and tastes heavenly? But you will be surprised to know that it is really healthy too, and what’s more, it will keep youenergised for the better part of the day. The nutrition facts of this dream recipe look pretty impressivetoo, so it’s a breakfastpacked with protein, fibre, antioxidants, potassium and vitamin A.
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 very ripe banana
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- ⅔ Cup rolled oats
- 4 – 5 tablespoons dark chocolate peanut butter
- 3 tablespoons raw cacao powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup any nut milk
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup, or to taste
- Chopped assorted nuts, dark chocolate chips, and peanut butter, to serve
Peel the banana and mash it in a large bowl. Blend in the pumpkin puree, peanut butter, cacao powder and chia seeds along with the vanilla extract.
Next add the rolled oats with the almond milk, maple syrup, and blend well to combine.
Cover the lid of the container and keep in the fridge overnight.
Take out the bowl in the morning and divide the oats between the two bowls. Sprinkle chopped nuts, chocolate chips, and the peanut butteron top and enjoy your breakfast dessert!
2. Salmon Sandwich
The salmon sandwich is the perfect addition to your high energy recipe list. High on omega 3 fatty acids and b vitamins, it keeps your energy slumps away. Team it with whole gain and you will get a fulfilling meal, which also promotes cardiovascular health.
- 1 (6-ounce) package fresh baby spinach
- 1/4 cup toasted walnuts
- 1 garlic clove
- 170 grams fresh baby spinach
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil/coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
Dash of sea salt:
- 1 teaspoon Spanish smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 teaspoon dark brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 170 grams salmon fillets
- 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
- 4 toasted whole-grain rolls
Put all ingredients like spinach, lemon juice, walnuts, garlic cloves, Parmesan cheese, 1 tablespoon olive oil, a dash of salt and pulse into a food processor. Scrape down the sides of thebowl, until it is smooth. Put the pesto into a bowl; cover them and chill.
Combine the paprika, dark brown sugar, ¼ teaspoon salt, crushed red pepper and black pepper in a small bowl. Dry the salmon fillets; and sprinkle the tops with the spice mixture. Heat about 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil/coconut oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
Reduce the heat to medium; cook the fish for about7 minutes on both sides till it turns golden and is cooked through. Split the whole-grain in half and spread the 1 tablespoon pesto on each bottom and top it off with one fillet. Add the tops of rolls and serve it with pesto.
3. Egg, Spinach and Tomato Sandwich
Egg, spinach and tomato, all the high energy foods part of your energy diet are part of this recipe, so you can imagine how this recipe can be ideal for your high energy lunch or dinner. Spinach and tomatoes are a receptacle of vitamins and antioxidants; add that to fiber-filled whole wheat bread and you have a combination of protein and carbs to keepyou satiated for longer hours.
- ½ whole wheat bread
- 1 slice tomato
- ¼ cup fresh spinach, cooked and squeezed dry
- 1 hard-boiled egg, sliced width-wise
- 1 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese
- Salt-free seasoning blend
Set the bread half on a toaster oven pan. Top it off with the spinach and tomato. Lay it on the egg slices. Add the cheese and let it cover the egg slices. Sprinkle with seasoning to taste.
Place it under the boiler for 2 to 3 minutes, and watch it carefully so that the cheese is lightly browned. Servewarm.
If you perennially feel depleted of energy, then it is time you took a good look at your diet, especially your breakfast. You need to eat enough at breakfast so that your energy stores are not radically depleted. Without the right amount of quick energy foods, your body begins to conserve energy and burns much lesser calories, thus affecting your metabolism.
So, eat right and add the right foods to your diet to feel great from inside. ‘A healthy outside starts from the inside’, this quote by Robert Urich inspires us to start eating well! Are you inspired enough to eat right too? Tell us more about your favourite energy boosting food recipes! We would love to hear from you.