Hello Loyal Soup People! This week I’d like to chat about energy. Too often I see people consuming “energy shots,” “energy bars,” and sugary drinks and smoothies in an attempt to get a boost of energy. While these products will indeed give you a quick jolt of energy from the injection of sugar directly into your bloodstream, you’ll soon feel even more fatigued as the effects wear off, and you’ll be craving another quick “shot” of sugar. This is not a healthy cycle! If you’re looking for true, sustained energy throughout the day, look to real, whole foods that will provide a steady supply of energy.
Whole grains, high quality proteins, fruits, and vegetables are digested slowly by your body. As you digest these nutritious foods, their energy is slowly and steadily released into your body. So, instead of a quick jolt of extreme, sugar-induced energy, you’ll have a steady supply and no sugar crash!
The best foods to provide steady energy are high fiber, complex carbohydrates such as oatmeal, quinoa, freekah, and bulgur, as well as seeds, nuts, fruits, vegetables, and legumes. A snack of carrots and pita, or apples and nuts, is going to keep you far more energized than a can of soda. Also, try to avoid huge meals in the middle of the day. People can often feel lethargic after a large, unhealthy meal as the body attempts to digest all the fat, salt, and sugar. If you snack periodically, you won’t approach lunch in a state of extreme hunger. You’ll be more likely to eat a lower calorie, healthy lunch.
Also, be sure to stay hydrated. One of the primary signs of dehydration is lethargy. Sip water or tea throughout the day to stay energized and hydrated.
Remember – any product that promises a quick fix is exactly that – a short term band-aid rather than a long term solution. Take the extra time to properly fuel your body, and you’ll be more energized and productive throughout the day!
*NOTE – Soupermom is not a licensed dietitian, doctor, personal trainer, or anything like that. She’s just extremely knowledgeable about healthy living!! But if you slip and fall while taking her advice, it is not her fault!