Eat light, eat fresh and eat often for better energy management.
Did you know?
Your blood glucose levels play an important role in how energised you feel. Regular meals provide a constant supply of blood glucose – fuel for your brain – giving you longer lasting energy and improved concentration.
Researchers have found that people who eat a lot at lunch are more likely to experience an afternoon slump. This is because there is a spike in blood sugar levels after eating, followed by a slump in energy later.
Some foods will drain your energy:
Avoiding high fat, energy dense foods is one way to improve your energy levels. Foods that drain your energy should be reduced or eliminated altogether. These foods, loaded with simple sugars, cause a quick energy boost, and then a rapid decline occurring just as quickly as the boost. This often leaves you more drained than before.
Stimulants such as caffeine and sugar may provide a short-term boost of energy, but long-term they deplete your body of energy as they continually drawing out minerals and nutrients. Stimulants include:
- Coffee, soft drinks and alcohol
- Sugar and artificial sweeteners
- Trans fats
- Focus on healthy habits
Keep healthy foods at work to snack on throughout the day. For example, dried fruit and nut mix, fruit, vegetable sticks, wholemeal crackers with hummus and low-fat yoghurt tubs.
To ensure your meals are "lighter" and "fresher" aim for 50% of your plate to be fruit and/or vegetables. They are low in kilojoules, yet abundant in nutrients, giving you more bang for your buck!
Incorporate foods that increase your energy into your daily diet:
- Dark green leafy vegetables are a high quality food source providing many of the vitamins your body needs to stay healthy as well as provide sustained energy. These vegetables are often high in calcium, iron, zinc, folate, potassium and vitamins A, C, E and K.
- Whole grains are an important source of carbohydrates. Carbohydrates supply energy to the body in the form of glucose, which is the preferred fuel source for the brain and central nervous system. Without glucose, or without being able to convert it into energy rapidly and efficiently, you cannot maintain health.