The next time your energy levels are feeling low, instead of cracking open a can of Red Bull, brewing a coffee, or taking advantage of the excuse to grab some candy, why not try and pep yourself up in a more healthy way.
Stimulants and sugar may get the job done, but it’s not the only way to go. Below you will find some of the best energy boosting foods and all of them are healthy options that can easily be incorporated into a calorie-controlled diet.
1. Fresh Fruit
The ratios of fructose and glucose provided by fresh fruit are very similar to what you’d get from table sugar, so they can provide a quick energy buzz that is very similar to that of sugar.
However, fruit is packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are good for the health. Fruit also contains water and generally has less sugar by volume.
The antioxidants provided by fruit also help purge the body of free radical toxins that can slow the metabolism, robbing the body of energy and encouraging weight gain.
Most fruits are also good sources of Vitamin C, which can boost energy levels by improving fat metabolism.
Some fruits also contain modest amounts of B Vitamins, including Vitamin B6. All B Vitamins help the body extract energy from food and Vitamin B6 is a key ingredient in energy drinks.
Tuna is always a healthy food option and bodybuilders love it because it’s high in protein and low in fat.
Eating tuna can also do wonders for your energy levels.
The body burns protein for energy when carbohydrate is not available. Tuna also contains several B Vitamins including Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B12 (another key ingredient in energy drinks).
Having a bowl of oatmeal is a very good way to start the day. Oatmeal one of the best energy-providing foods there is and it’s high in fiber.
This makes it very filling and allows it to be useful for staving off feelings of mid-morning hunger. Oatmeal is a good source of complex carbohydrate and, unlike simple carbohydrate (sugar), it releases energy slowly.
The effects take a little while to kick in, so oatmeal is a poor choice for anyone in need of a quick energy buzz, but it’s perfect for providing a long-lasting supply of energy.
If you want to feel energized and focused, without the need for coffee, oatmeal will do the trick. However, anyone who is watching their weight will need to be sensible about it and forgo the temptation to add honey or sugar.
Salmon is often referred to as a “brain food” because the omega-3 fatty acids it provides support good mental health, fight depression, and improve the mood.
However, omega-3 is also an energy-provider, but it won’t need to act alone.
Salmon is an excellent source of protein. It’s also rich in Vitamins B6 and B12. In fact, each 100g serving of salmon provides the body with 53% of the Recommended Daily Amount (RDA) of Vitamin B12 and 30% of the RDA for Vitamin B6.
If you are partial to its sour flavor, eating this fermented raw cabbage can be a good way to boost your energy levels.
Sauerkraut provides complex carbohydrate, dietary fiber, and a number of important vitamins and minerals including Vitamin C and Vitamin B6. It’s prepared using a process called lactic acid fermentation.
Apart from providing the cabbage with such a distinctive taste, lactic acid fermentation also causes sauerkraut to be high in probiotic bacteria, also known as flora or “good bacteria”.
Probiotics support healthy digestive function, enabling the body to process food more efficiently and obtain an increased amount of energy.
Mushrooms are another energy-providing food that contains several B Vitamins, including Vitamins B6 and B12. Mushrooms are also a good source of iron.
One cup provides around 50% of the RDA. The body needs iron to support the production of the red blood cells that are responsible for transporting oxygen around the body.
When people are lacking in this important mineral it causes them to feel fatigued, rundown, and unwell.
By supporting red blood cell production iron can boost energy levels, provide extra mental focus, and encourage an increased sense of well-being.
Although it’s unlikely to give you arms like Popeye, like mushrooms, spinach is an excellent source of iron. It also provides generous amounts of magnesium and potassium.
Magnesium supports the activity of more than 300 enzyme systems that are integral to numerous important biological processes including protein synthesis and blood glucose control.
Magnesium is also required for energy production at the cellular level because it supports the release of energy from ATP.
Potassium helps the cells release energy as well and offers additional value as an energy provider because it supports the healthy digestion of food.