Go beyond standard gas station snacks with the 12 best food options that’ll keep you full and satisfied on any adventure life throws at you.
When energy starts to wane, many adults reach for a second or third cup of coffee or an “energy” drink. Of coffee drinkers in the U.S., 65 percent drink 13 or more cups per week. The quick boost may work temporarily, but long-term energy and health is best developed through food choices.
“Sugary foods such as soda will provide a spike in energy, but this is quickly followed by an energy crash, leaving you more tired than you originally were,” says Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, CDE author of Belly Fat Diet For Dummies.
“Caffeine in small amounts can boost energy and performance, but if overused, it can actually become a stressor to your body, increasing fatigue.”
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The point is clear – by fueling your body in the right way, you can make it through any day, whether you are heading to the office or hitting the hiking trails.
Palinski-Wade suggests the following fuel foods for optimal energy:
Believe it or not, water will help you stay energized, as well as keep you feeling full longer. A well-hydrated body is one that will function more efficiently.
Whether you bake a warm bowl of oatmeal for breakfast or keep oat-based granola bars in your purse, this food will fuel you with plenty of fiber.
This high-quality protein source is also packed with amino acids. One egg only has around 70 calories, and about 5 grams of fat and the combination keeps your brain believing it is full for a longer period of time.
4- Greek yogurt.
While all yogurts have vitamins B12 and B6, as well as zinc and potassium, plain Greek yogurt is also a great source of protein and probiotic cultures.
5- Chia seeds.
This staple of the ancient Aztec warriors is known for its energy-boosting properties. Chia seeds are also great for heightening immunity and improving joint health. They have also been linked with lower instances of cervical and breast cancer.
An average apple has about 5 grams of fiber and can give you the added boost you need to get through your day. For fruits, apples tend to be relatively inexpensive too.
7- Peanut butter.
In moderation, peanut butter is a great addition to any daily menu. It is high in soluble fiber and contains arginine, an amino acid that helps control blood pressure.
If you can stomach them, sardines are a lean protein that has the amino acid tyrosine which has been shown to improve mental function. If you aren’t a fan of canned fish, go with salmon which is chock full of omega-3 fatty acids.
Of all fruits, figs have the highest amount of calcium and they are also an excellent source of fiber and vitamin K. While dried figs are easiest to find, ripe figs (if you can find them) have higher antioxidant properties.
This inexpensive food is often overlooked — but should be praised for its high nutritional content. Beans are high in iron, complex carbohydrates, zinc, potassium and magnesium. Puree some chickpeas for a healthy hummus to dip your veggies in at break time.
Just a whiff of a fresh orange can be an instant energy-booster and eating one can prove to be the lift needed during a low-energy moment. Oranges strengthen immunity and the soluble fiber slows down fruit sugar absorption in the blood.
These are excellent source of folate, vitamin B6, potassium and vitamin K. One avocado contains one-third of the daily vitamin C requirements. It is the fiber content of avocado that makes it such a smart energy food though.
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