Most of us suffer from energy slumps at various times of the day. For some of us it’s the battle to get out of bed in the morning, for others, it’s the famous afternoon drowsy feeling. Whatever you do, don’t grab an energy drink when tiredness hits, instead, eat a diet which contains natural, slow release energy foods and the problem will disappear.
Firstly, choose foods that are as close to their natural state as possible. Then look at foods that keep your sugar levels well balanced – protein and fibre rich foods. Avoid simple carbohydrates, such as sugar, white bread and white flour and turn to complex carbohydrates which take longer to digest and therefore sustain energy.
- Brown and wild rice
- Chia seeds
Non-starchy vegetables contain slow-release complex carbohydrates.
There are some starchy vegetables are also complex carbohydrates that provide sustained energy. Remember to keep them as close to their natural state as possible.
- Sweet potatoes
The best fruits to eat for sustained energy are berries, cherries, plums, apples and pears. Avoid tropical fruits as they generally contain quick release carbohydrates and are therefore not conducive to maintaining energy levels.
The complex structure of proteins means they take much longer to digest than simple carbohydrates, thus allowing us to feel full and energised for longer. Legumes are a great addition to a diet, especially for vegans and vegetarians. They are full of protein, complex carbohydrates and fibre.
- Lean meat
- Lean poultry
- Fish – especially oily fish such as salmon and sardines
- Low-fat dairy products
- Legumes, such as kidney beans, chickpeas and lentils
- Small handful of nuts