If you’re like many adults, getting enough nutrients to maintain the energy to feel great each day – minus that extra cup of coffee – is a challenge. So challenging, in fact, that many working adults find themselves suffering from adrenal fatigue, general exhaustion, and pessimism, all adding up to an inability to accomplish their work and enjoy their lives. If this sounds like you, good nutrition can help. Consider the following methods for eating your way to energy each day:
Diet does not equal starving. Whether you’re on a weight loss plan or not, don’t go hungry, as this depletes your energy stores and limits your ability to perform at your best. Exercising on too little food is extremely difficult, as is working or parenting. Prevent blood sugar dips by eating small, complex carbohydrate foods throughout your day. Eating three moderately-sized meals per day, plus two snacks, will help keep energy high.
Dehydration can cause dizziness, headaches, confusion, increased heart rate, and increased breathing rate. While you may imagine your dehydrated self as someone crawling on elbows and knees through the desert, lacking water for days, it can just as easily be you, sitting at your desk with a water glass beside you that has been empty for an hour.
Drink up! Don’t wait til you’re thirsty. Consume 6-8 ounces of fluid before and after you take a walk, and sip water every 15 minutes during any activity – even preparing for that board meeting.
Sports drinks pack extra sugar in the form of glucose, which can be essential when you’re tackling that 5K. They also include sodium and potassium, electrolytes necessary for optimal athletic performance. However, for less active days, plain or lemon-infused water is better for you.
Your body is an expert at monitoring calories. You don’t need to drink a quart of sports formula or eat an energy bar before exercising. Instead, before exercise or intense mental activity, drink a glass of water and eat a small, nutrient-rich snack (about 100-200 calories) –but only if it has been over two hours since you last ate.
Protein provides energy you can depend on to get you through longer morning walks, run-and-tickle-sessions with your kids, or on-the-job demands. Why? Protein caps the rise in blood sugar after eating a snack or full meal, which helps to extend your energy. As an example, a 150 lb person needs 75-113 grams of protein daily. So eat plenty of poultry, fish, lean meat, low-fat dairy, legumes, nut butters, and nuts.
Being an energetic force to reckon with involves eating the right foods at the right times of day. Taking a multivitamin or multiple supplements each day can help support you during an “off” day or when you don’t eat the way you should. Look for multivitamins that contain iron and zinc (abundant in meat, poultry, and certain fish). Also, be sure to seek out calcium, Vitamin D, and magnesium, as these nutrients strengthen your bones, particularly as you age.
Maintaining high energy levels is all about nutrition and getting enough rest. Need nutritional guidance? Contact our team at Water’s Edge Natural Medicine today!
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