Written By: Lauren Steeves
Because you need more than coffee to make it through the week.
To say this work week has been rough is an understatement, and it’s only Thursday. After 10 days of holidays, it’s hard to get back into routine and realize that you have to use your brain again. It’s a sad reality when you can no longer watch Netflix all afternoon, snack on gingerbread cookies all day and drink booze all night. Instead we have to set our alarms again, actually be productive and sit through an eight-hour workday without taking a nap—life is tough.
So how do we cope and get through this?
Well for most of us the answer is coffee. And not just one cup of coffee, but so much coffee that we’re more like jittery squirrels getting distracted by shiny things, than we are human beings.
As great as coffee is, everyone knows this can’t fuel our days everyday. Sooner or later we are going to crash and burn harder than Lindsay Lohan after a night of partying.
So what’s the solution?
The answer lies in what we put in our bodies.
We can keep putting all the sugar, carbs and caffeine in our bodies and cross our fingers that we don’t fade out as soon as the temporary high is gone, or we can fuel our body with superfoods.
I am by no means a health-nut, so I needed food that would actually eat and not something like amaranth, which is apparently the new quinoa.
Didn’t you know? Quinoa is so 2015.
So I’ve compiled a list of 10 foods that will help boost your energy, make you more productive and overall, make you feel better.
The 10 Energy No-Brainers
I know water technically isn’t a food, but our bodies need it just as bad. After all, we are composed of two-thirds water, so it isn’t hard to believe that more H20 is necessary to keep our bodies hydrated and our minds sharp. You should aim to drink close to two litres of water a day, or in simpler terms, two S’Wells.
It’s important to consume water in the morning. Since we go an entire night without hydrating ourselves, when we wake up the morning we are usually very dehydrated, which can cause us to feel drowsy and sleepy the rest of the day. So to give our bodies the boost we need, we should drink a glass of water as soon as we wake up. It will give our minds more clarity and help us get shit done.
If you Google the best foods to eat, in almost every article it lists almonds. So it’s safe to say that almonds are more than just a little nuts. Almonds are a great energy no-brainer because they are a good source of healthy fats and protein. They also work hard to balance your blood sugar levels. Not only are almonds delicious, they are easy to throw in your purse, briefcase or lunch kit, making it an easy on-the-go snack for when hunger strikes.
3. Greek Yogurt
Ever wonder why every woman in a yogurt commercial is smiling so fucking much? Well it’s probably because she’s ate so much yogurt that she’s full of energy and doesn’t know what else to do. But in all seriousness, Greek yogurt is an energy no-brainer because it’s full of probiotics. Probiotics help our bodies with digestion and also help strengthen our immune systems. A stronger immune system equals more energy. So you’ll be able to stay awake during your meeting and fight off that nasty cold at the same time.
Blueberries are essentially the superhero of the fruit realm. They are packed with antioxidants, vitamin A and C, potassium, magnesium, fibre and energy-boosting carbs. Since blueberries are packing a punch will all the good stuff, they will help boost not just your energy, but your immune system and mood as well.
Your body will be berry thankful for them.
When it comes to eggs, it doesn’t matter if you eat them scrambled, fried or poached, any way will give you the energy you need. Eggs are an energy no-brainer because they are full of iron and protein, so they’ll be able to keep you thriving all day long. Plus, eggs also help with brain function. So you can eat fried eggs and know that your brain won’t be fried too.
When it came to his obsession with spinach, who would have thought Popeye was on to something? Spinach can do a body good since it’s loaded with nutrients like fibre, vitamin K (good for your bones) and lutein (good for your eyes). Some researchers even think spinach can help maximize your workout results. But the real reason spinach is an energy no-brainer is because it’s loaded with iron. So next time you’re trying to decide between a sandwich or salad, you may want to opt for your leafy friend.
Since this fruit is loaded with potassium and B vitamins, it helps slow down your digestion system. This ultimately stabilizes your blood sugar levels, making it an energy no-brainer and an appeeling alternative to your coffee or energy drink.
8. Whole Grains
Whether you chose wheat, oats, or brown rice, it makes no difference. They are all considered whole grains and will give you a whole lot of energy. Whole grains are packed with complex carbs, B vitamins, fibre and iron, so you’ll stay energized throughout the day. So next time you’re grocery shopping be sure to choose the whole grain bread over white.
Yes you read that right—the same fruit that makes guacamole is also an energy no-brainer. Avocados are a good source of healthy fats, fibre, potassium and vitamins A and E. As a result, this delicious fruit helps fight diabetes, arthritis and chronic fatigue syndrome, not only boosting your energy but your metabolism as well. So you no longer need to feel guilty for ordering some guac at lunch, you’re just trying to energize yourself for afternoon meeting right?
10. Dark chocolate
While most of us are trying to cut out the sweets in 2016, one sweet that should make the cut is dark chocolate. Instead of pouring your second cup of joe, indulge on some dark chocolate. Dark chocolate is an energy no-brainer because it’s loaded with iron and magnesium. But in order to truly be an energy boosting success, you need to make sure the chocolate is at least 70 per cent.
So next week when your mind is still struggling from holiday withdrawals, rather than relying on caffeine and sugar to get you through, consider eating some of these energy no-brainers. We can’t promise the work won’t go away, but at least you’ll now have the energy to tackle your overflowing inbox and the hundredth meeting that could have been an email.