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Sunday, April 13, 2014

Energize Your Day

Over the past couple of weeks, I wrote about how you can eat to fight off the afternoon doldrums, how you can energize your day with breakfast.   How can you be more energetic all day?  Are there foods you can eat that promote energy?  Yes, there are and there are many simple ways to eat to energize your day.
1.    Focus on Good Carbs + Protein.   Yes, a donut will give you some quick energy but then you have the slump once the sugar high wears off.   But combining a whole grain carb and low –fat protein can give you energy that lasts.  Whole grain carbs are digested more slowly and then the protein kicks in for even more lasting energy.  Some suggestions:

a.       Peanut butter on whole grain bread or whole grain crackers 
b.      Low fat cheese on whole grain crackers 
c.       Hummus on whole grain crackers 
d.      Low fat yogurt and a 100 calorie whole grain bagel 

2   Magnesium – magnesium is an essential mineral that many Americans aren’t getting enough of.  A study on women found that those low in magnesium had faster heart rates and needed more oxygen to do simple physical tasks.  Meaning it just felt harder to get something done.  Your body uses magnesium for many nerve and muscle functions, for your heart, for energy metabolism, and maintaining your blood sugar levels.  No wonder a lack of magnesium can affect your everyday energy levels. 
a.       Whole grains –w hen they make white bread, white flour, they remove the magnesium and they don’t put it back.  So to ensure you are getting magnesium, choose whole grains, whole wheat bread, whole wheat crackers, brown rice. 
b.      Leafy greens – the darker the better for magnesium, like spinach 
c.       Nuts – a handful of nuts a day is a healthy habit for many reasons and getting magnesium is just another great reason to add nuts tor your day 
d.      Beans/peas – eating hummus is a great way to add magnesium to your diet 

3.  Dr. Oz has a great slideshow on the “Magnesium Grocery List”.    To get more magnesium in your day, he suggests 
a.       Bananas 
b.      Kidney beans, black beans, lentils 
c.       Cereals – Raisin Bran, Oatmeal, Shredded Wheat 
d.      Whole wheat bread 
e.      Quinoa 
f.        Brown rice
It really is easy to add one or more magnesium rich foods to your diet.  And remember to include a good carb and lean protein foods during your day.  

Image Source:  Energize Yourself

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