As busy human beings we juggle between work and family and this can be very stressful. This usually have negative effects on the body’s energy levels. That little sleep you have, that immense stress at work and that little time you have to feed depletes the energy stores in the body. It is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle through a balanced diet meal. Healthy eating ensures adequate energy stores in the body to push through the day. A balanced diet contains unrefined carbohydrates, proteins, fats and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals). They release energy in the body at different rates depending on their digestion and metabolic rates.
Energy Giving Foods
Carbohydrates are the main energy giving foods. They provide a diet for better energy. Protein and fats are used as energy sources when carbohydrates stores in the body have been depleted. Carbohydrates popularly known as carbs are of two types- simple and complex. Both eventually, produce glucose as the end product of metabolism in the body. This glucose is then circulated in the blood to provide the energy required by cells in the body. Brain sorely uses glucose as a source of energy and this explains the fatigue and lack of concentration seen when the blood glucose goes too low.
Diet for Sustained Energy
Complex carbohydrates are the best diet for sustained and prolonged energy. They include high fiber cereals, pastas, dried beans, starchy vegetables, whole grains like rice, wheat and bread. They are digested slowly at a consistent pace due to the fiber component in them. These complex carbs stabilize the sugar level in the body and you can stay for a longer time without feeling hungry.
Proteins such as chicken, pork, fish and legumes and mono/poly-saturated fats from fruit such as avocados, oils and nuts are also rich energy sources. Their energy stores are used when the carbohydrates are depleted in the blood.
Diet for Quick Energy
Simple carbohydrates usually provide a quick sugar lift when you feel exhausted and hungry. They are digested and absorbed very quickly into the body. Glucose, candy bars, simple sugar products, cookies, sugary beverages and juices, refined sugar, white starches and simple snacks consists of simple carbs to quickly top up their energy levels. Simple carbs use should be minimized to avoid the slump experienced afterwards.
Three meals and three snacks a day are adequate to as a diet for better energy in the body.