Banish the blahs! Five food tips for all-day energy at work

It’s 2 p.m. and your energy is plummeting faster than Wile E. Coyote after he steps off yet another cliff. You need a pick-me-up, but you’ve reached your limit on coffee and recent government reports have made you leery about energy drinks.

We’ve all been there. So what’s the best cure for the afternoon doldrums? Or, better yet, how do you prevent them from zapping your energy?

Kim Stinson-Burt, a dietitian at Nutritionally Your Best, recommends in the Huffington Post that, “Eating breakfast regularly and snacking regularly throughout the day, as well as drinking lots of water, can keep energy levels high”.

Here are five food tips for you to try before and during the day to beat the blahs.

fruitBalance Your Breakfast. Instead of having just dry cereal or yogurt, add some high antioxidant fruit, a good fat like nuts or seeds and raw or toasted oats. Try some warm quinoa with raisins, almonds and cinnamon. This highly nutritious grain will keep you full and energized until lunch.

Nibble on Nuts. These snacks are high in energy boosting B and E vitamins and potassium, which your body needs to avoid fatigue, muscle cramping and dehydration. Nuts are best in their raw form, preferably unroasted. Eating more nuts is great alternative to junk food, which will make you more tired.

Have a Banana! They’re not just for breakfast. Author and nutritionist Dr. Douglas Graham writes that, “Bananas are one of the world’s finest foods Mercado Municipal de São Paulofor supplying fuel energy. They supply a unique blend of vitamins, minerals, and carbohydrates that foster a quick and efficient conversion to useable fuel.”

Iron Up. Low levels of iron can deplete your energy, and nearly 10 percent of women between the ages of 20 and 49 are iron-deficient. Great plant sources of iron include beans, lentils, spinach and sesame seeds; eating these with vitamin C-rich foods can boost iron absorption.

Eat Well, Eat Often. Before you feel run down, have a healthy snack. Dietician Grace Derocha recommends pairing together two of the following snack foods to keep you going during a busy day.

  • Hard-boiled egglow fat cheese
  • A wide variety of fruits (apples, berries, tomatoes, etc.)
  • Low-fat cheese
  • Cereal bar with protein and fiber (watch the calories and fat)
  • Vegetables with hummus
  • Nuts
  • Greek yogurt

Photo credit (top to bottom): A Healthier Michigan via Flickr (feature), A Healthier Michigan via FlickrFernando Stankuns, A Healthier Michigan via Flickr

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