There’s not much worse than the mid-afternoon slump; that part of the day a couple of hours after lunch when you feel like curling up and taking a nap instead of finishing out the workday. Especially this time of year. You shouldn’t have to deal with that day in and day out, but it is a normal part of life and work for a lot of people. To overcome that, you might turn to coffee or a sugary snack for a little pick-me-up. But those only give you a short burst of energy and are often followed by an even stronger slump after they wear off. So instead, how about reaching for something a bit healthier that can still give you that quick burst of energy and sustain it throughout the rest of your day. Here are 5 energy-boosting foods to incorporate into your diet to keep you going.
Almonds: This tasty snack is full of magnesium and vitamin B. Low magnesium levels can result in tiring quickly, especially during physical activity. Vitamin B deficiencies can lead to fatigue, irritability, and poor concentration. So, keep a bag of almonds with you at your desk, or in your car for the next time you need a little boost. Almonds are high in fat and easy to overeat, so make sure you stick to the serving size as much as possible.
Popcorn: This whole-grain snack is packed with fiber which helps prevent blood-sugar crashes. This means you can use the energy from the carbohydrate but maintain it without a drop. It’s crunchy, tasty, and it has far fewer calories than chips and other empty snacks, which means you can eat a higher volume of it without the guilt, which will keep you fuller longer.
Peanut butter: Full of healthy fats, protein, and fiber, this snack is not only tasty but filling. It’s delicious paired with fruits, whole grain toast, or by itself. It’s sure to keep your blood sugar balanced while giving you the energy boost you need. Same as with almonds, you want to watch your serving size because peanut butter is high in calories.
Salmon: This fish is full of omega-3 fatty acids that are perfect for brain health. These fatty acids have been shown to reduce depression and boost your mood. They also help you lower your blood pressure and cholesterol. Having salmon for lunch not only keeps your meal light but will give you energy to last through the day.
Hummus: This tasty snack is made with very few ingredients, but those ingredients are full of nutrients to provide you with lots of energy. Garbanzo beans (chickpeas), sesame-based tahini, olive oil, and lemon juice all come together to make up this versatile food. The beans contain both protein and fiber which helps stabilize blood sugar, keep you feeling full, and boost your energy. It’s great as a dip with vegetables or even added to your favorite sandwich for a little extra flavor.
Energy is something we can all use a little more of. Make these foods a part of your life regularly and see your energy levels change for the better.