Note: This is a guest post from Stefan C. Radoi
We’ve all been there before, feeling sluggish even if the day just started. Drink plenty of coffee? That’s actually a bad idea, as it can make you feel even more tired. How about this instead? Here is a list of 18 energy boosting foods and 5 foods you need to avoid from now on.
Here are 18 energy boosting foods:
- The humble apple – Apples are not only rich in minerals and vitamins but also antioxidants. As they say “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”. Apples can also be a great energy booster during the cold season.
- Popcorn – Popcorn is a great source of fiber! Make sure you go for the low-fat version though. And go easy on the salt. Microwave popcorn is great.
- Bananas – Bananas are packed with potassium, a great source of energy.
- Red peppers – Bell peppers or red peppers are full of vitamin C and A. Peppers are also a tasty way to prevent cancer, since they contain lycopene.
- Pumpkin seeds – Pumpkin seeds are rich in protein, vitamin K, magnesium iron and calcium. Their crunchiness makes them a great afternoon snack. Other types of seeds and nuts work in the same way and there’s plenty of different types to choose from.
- Carrots – Carrots are great! They’re rich in fiber, which can help your body maintain its normal functions. Apart from that, carrots are a good match with just about any other veggie, including bell peppers.
- Oatmeal – Oats are one of the healthiest sources of carbs and a great breakfast meal. There are plenty of recipes you can try out and it’s delicious!
- Pineapple – Pineapples can help with digestion as well as being a sweet and healthy snack. You can eat them alone or with other fruit. It works great.
- Blueberries – Blueberries are another delicious energy booster. No wonder bears love blueberries so much!
- Avocados – Avocados can help you maintain a smooth, soft skin. Apart from that, they can lower cholesterol levels and are packed with fiber and healthy fats. You can snack on an avocado by itself, with other fruit or in a salad – just make sure you know how to pick a nice ripe one.
- Figs and dried figs – Dried figs can help with eliminating toxins from the body. They’re also high in sugar and a great energy booster.
- Strawberries – Strawberries are rich in biotin, vitamin C and fiber. They are also a great source of antioxidants, which keep your skin moist and young.
- Cucumbers – Cucumbers are 96% water! Cucumbers taste great in salads or by themselves. It’s a great hydrating veggie, packed with nutrients which can help you get through the day.
- Green salad or iceberg salad – Green salad is a great lunchtime snack choice. It’s filled with minerals and vitamins, plus it’s easy to digest.
- Dark chocolate – Dark chocolate is another excellent source of energy. A few tablets are enough to keep you going, so it’s the perfect afternoon snack. It’s also packed with antioxidants!
- Quinoa – Quinoa is a very popular type of grain simply because it’s a complete protein which can provide your body with all the essential amino acids.
- Celery – Celery is a crunchy, delicious super food. Easily digestible and rich in fiber plus vitamin C and B. Celery can reduce inflammation throughout the body and balance sodium and potassium levels.
- Coconuts – Apart from being tasty and fun to nibble on, coconuts are also one of the few foods that help the body produce more energy.
Here is a list of foods and drinks you need to avoid if you feel sluggish:
- Potato chips and other snacks – Snacks in general, especially potato chips are full of unhealthy fats and plenty of salt. They can make you feel sluggish and even dehydrate you, making you feel even more tired. It’s just best to avoid them and find something else to nibble on.
- Orange juice – Orange juice is a high fructose drink and commercial orange juice may contain artificial flavors and added sugar. Orange juice does not contain any antioxidants or fiber, so it’s simply better to eat the fruit and avoid the juice.
- Cereal – although cereals are a popular breakfast choice, they don’t provide the body with much energy. Cereals are packed with sugar and refined carbohydrates, so you should try something different in the morning. How about some hummus?
- Soda or sugary drinks, including coffee – apart from the fact that sodas are simply unhealthy, they also contain tons of sugar – it can give you a short energy boost but once the sugar “high” is over, it will leave you more tired than ever.
- Fried foods – Any type of fried food will be full of fat, which can take a toll on your digestion. Your stomach will need more blood to be able to digest the food, leaving you tired and sluggish. Instead of fried foods, you can go for grilled chicken breast or baked veggies.
Staying healthy and energetic throughout the day has never been easier. Who said “healthy” can’t be delicious?
Stefan C. Radoi is a young novelist and fitness enthusiast. His ultimate dream is to climb the Seven Summits.