If you seem to go through a lull during the day and dream of taking a nap, have trouble focusing on the task at hand, or just feel downright exhausted, maybe your diet is partly to blame.
Many people don’t always consider their diet when they assess their energy levels, but your food actually plays a vital role in energy levels.
The high sugar content can cause your body to ‘crash’ and should be consumed in moderation; not for the purpose of gaining energy. Complex carbs are the best way to get and sustain energy all day long.
Starting and maintaining a healthy way of eating doesn’t have to be hard and can boost your energy levels significantly without risking harm that can be caused by artificial alternatives.
Body Fuel from Foods
The energy you have comes from what you eat and drink. Energy uses three main nutrients:
Carbs are the primary source of body fuel, but your body will turn to fats and proteins for this fuel if no carbs are available. As you eat food it is broken down, making smaller components that are then absorbed by the body for fuel. Another way to describe this process is by referring to its common name – metabolism.
There are two types of carbs, complex and simple, but both are converted to sugar by the body. The body then breaks down the sugar in your blood and cells using this sugar as the energy source.
Sustainable Energy from Foods
When you think about re-energizing your body, you need to think long-term. You don’t want a quick fix that leaves you drained at some point in time. Sustaining your energy levels can be achieved with the help of complex carbohydrates.
The fiber in these particular carbs takes a lot longer to digest and absorb slowly, providing more energy for longer lengths of time. You can stabilize your sugar levels with complex carbs as well.
Protein & Fluids
Protein is vital in a healthy diet and can be found in a wide variety of foods, including turkey, fish, chicken and pork tenderloin.
Legumes are another energy-producing food (beans and lentils) as well as heart-healthy fats like those in nuts, seeds, and avocados. Obviously, it’s important that you drink the right fluids and consume enough to sustain your energy levels.
Water helps your body function correctly and helps transport consumed nutrients to the body for energy. If you are dehydrated you will experience lower energy levels. You can quickly bounce back by ensuring you drink 6-8 8oz glasses of water every day.
Foods to Avoid
Limit the simple carbohydrates included in the diet. Simple carbs can range from sugary juices and beverages to cookies and candy.
This type of carb is quickly absorbed and broken down once in the system and has the ability to boost energy levels. But this will only last for 25-45 minutes. After this, the body will experience a noticeable slump in energy and performance.
Other foods to avoid (or at least keep to a minimum) are caffeine and alcohol. Caffeine is similar and while it does provide short-term energy it is soon followed by a crash, while alcohol will also lower the energy levels.
Eating for sustainable energy levels is key to maintaining productivity and maximizing your day-to-day potential. By following the simple tips listed in this article, you can make small changes that will have a big impact on your overall energy levels. So what are you waiting for? Start eating for sustainable energy today!