Feeling sluggish? There are lots of reasons why you might be tired and whilst we can all be guilty of reaching for a sugary pick me up or caffeinated drink to give us a boost, we all know that this isn’t healthy in the long term.
So what should we be eating to improve our energy levels in a more natural way? With so many expensive and exotic ‘superfoods’ taking over supermarket aisles, it’s difficult to know the right options to choose and it’s all too easy to get swept up in the hype, overlooking the super sources of energy which are less glamorous.
Read on to discover the essential foods to eat to improve your energy levels without breaking the bank!
Low GI, that is. The GI or ‘Glycemic Index’ of a food is the number which estimates how high a blood glucose levels rise after eating that food. Being aware of a food’s GI is a good way to understand the impact what you eat will have on your blood sugar.
Regulating your blood sugar by choosing low GI foods such as porridge instead of toast helps to keep your appetite in check, leaving you less likely to reach for the sugary treats and resulting in a steadier release of energy across the day.
Make Fish the Dish of the Day
A good source of vitamin D, protein, vitamin A and some B vitamins, oily fish are already nutritional powerhouses but they also pack a punch when it comes to boosting our energy levels.
Salmon, tuna, herring, mackerel and sardines boast the essential Omega-3 fatty acids that make oily fish a great option for keeping your body and mind alert.
Always Tired? Iron Out The Problem
Feeling constantly tired? Persistently low levels of energy can be a sign that you’re deficient in iron. Ensuring that your body receives a steady intake of iron rich foods can help give your body that extra energy boost it needs.
Eating your greens is a good place to start. Spinach is an excellent source of iron. If you can’t stomach a plate of Popeye’s favourite, foods such as red meat, beans, dried fruit (e.g. apricots, prunes, raisins) and brown rice are also good choices to include in your diet. Curious about other sources of core nutrients? Check out our recent blog post
Water, Water Everywhere…
It’s all too easy to reach for a coffee when you’re feeling tired – giving you that instant buzz, but what goes up must come down. After the initial effects of caffeine take hold, they’re often followed by a slump, sapping you of energy until you have another coffee…
Instead stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Essential for replenishing fluids lost during the day, keeping your body supplied with H2O helps keep headaches and fatigue at bay.
If you find you forget to drink, keep a bottle of water on your desk at work to help jog your memory.
Hit the 3pm crash at work? It’s all too easy to reach for a biscuit to boost our energy levels. However, like our quick fix caffeine, this reinvigorated energy is only temporary when we stock up on sugary treats. Instead, opt for Low GI fruits such as strawberries or cherries.
Finally – Don’t Forget Your Trigger foods
Taking account of the foods above should go a long way to help improve your energy levels long term but what if something in the list doesn’t agree with you? Tiredness and low energy can be a common side effect of a food intolerance.