In order to focus and be productive throughout the day, you need ample amounts of energy. One of the easiest ways to get energy is to eat healthy and nutritious foods.
There are plenty of foods out there for you to choose from daily. Knowing which will give you a boost of energy and which foods will slow you down will help you make a more informed decision for your diet choices.
If you’re looking for a list of all the foods you should be eating to give yourself a boost of energy and make you feel focused all day long, you’ve come to the right place! Add these 9 energy boosting foods to your grocery list if you haven't already!
The Importance of Energy
Our bodies consume foods and drinks and turn them into energy so that we can function properly. Energy comes from everything you eat. Some foods give you just a burst of energy, and others give prolonged energy that is more useful for you. Carbohydrates, proteins, and fats all work together to supply us with energy, so choosing foods that contain healthy components like complex carbs, unsaturated fats, and lean protein is important.
We use energy to do everything in our daily routines. We use it to go for runs, to brush and braid our hair, to take a mid-term test, and even as we are talking and laughing. If you aren’t getting enough energy in your daily life, you might begin to feel extremely tired, easily irritated, and have a difficult time staying concentrated on tasks.
While many might attribute this to their emotional state, whether or not they’ve been getting enough sleep or a lack of exercise, nutrition plays a major role in how you feel. Consuming proper nutrition and thinking about what you’re putting into your body can help keep your energy levels high.
And hey, a little guidance never hurt anyone!
How To Get Energy
Our bodies don't naturally create energy, so there isn't an endless supply of it. This is why nutrition is so important. Eating food is one of the main ways to supply energy to your body because the carbohydrates, fats, and protein you consume are converted into energy.
Gulucose supplies energy to the cells in our body, this directly comes from carbohyrdates! There are two kinds of carbs: simple carbs and complex carbs. Quick bursts of energy come from complex carbs like sugar.
Filling up on simple carbs, you will feel your energy levels crashing quickly, causing you to be more groggy/tired. If you are looking for prolonged and sustained energy, consuming complex carbs, made up of fiber and starches, will help. Our body uses leftover stores of carbs in the liver to provide energy later.
Fats are broken down into fatty acids that create cell linings. Any extra that isn’t used up as energy is then stored in fat cells.
Top Foods for Energy
Food choices can really impact your blood sugar regulation throughout the day, which is important to maintaining consistent energy/focus. On top of drinking enough water, it’s essential that the foods you are eating provide you with long-lasting energy and plenty of nutrients to promote the functioning of your body.
Read through this list of energizing food options to figure out which sounds the most appealing to you!
Even if you’ve never heard of a bento box, the concept should seem familiar! A bento box is a single portion meal that is usually composed of a carb, protein, and either pickled/cooked vegetables. These boxes can be made with sushi, rice, noodles, fish, or chicken. Don't forget your veggies! Pick whichever vegetables you prefer, and they will provide you with a perfectly balanced meal.
Bento boxes are perfect for on-the-go traveling, whether to work, school, or a long day of errands. The contents inside the box are meant to go well together and provide you with everything needed to stay energized. The box’s purpose is to offer the ideal serving size for one person, with the right macronutrients to provide long-lasting energy to get you through the rest of the day. These boxes are rather easy to assemble yourself and are a delicious option if you want something more cohesive.
Quinoa is a seed often mistaken for a grain that has become popular in recent years and is a major component in many dishes. Protein, dietary fiber, carbs and all packed in there which make it a superfood! Ultimately, it’s understandable why more and more people are using it.
If you need long-lasting energy, quinoa is your friend. Even though it is high in carbs, it has a low glycemic index, meaning a slower rise in glucose levels. This means when you eat quinoa, it is digested and absorbed into the body slower, allowing for energy to be used more sustainably.
Almonds and Apples
If you are looking for protein-packed snacks that are easy to bring with you while also being flavorful and energizing, don’t cut out the power of nuts and apples! Almonds provide protein, healthy fats, and complex carbs that allow for sustained energy.
They contain B vitamins and magnesium, which are essential nutrients needed to convert food into energy. Almonds are an easy snack and great to keep on hand when you are feeling fatigued and need a boost!
Apples are versatile snack food and a great source of carbs and fiber. There are natural sugars and fibers within an apple that help to carry out a sustainable energy release. Additionally, apples have a high content of antioxidants, helping to slow the digestion of carbs and release energy slower.
Hummus and Carrots
Another great nutrient-rich food that is easy to bring with you to give you a little pick-me-up is hummus. Learning how to make your own hummus is a life changer. With the main ingredients being garbanzo beans (chickpeas), tahini, lemon juice, and olive oil, each bit contributes to the tastiness. The chickpeas provide protein to the hummus and the olive oil provides healthy fats that are great for maintaining energy. You can combine hummus with various vegetables, but one of our favorites is pairing hummus with carrots.
Carrots contain very little fat and protein, but they are high in water content and starches and fiber. Combining your carrots and hummus make for a very tasty snack that can provide much-needed energy. Carrots are also a great source of vitamin K1, potassium, and antioxidants and make for a perfect match for hummus.
Organic Rolled Oats
Eating oats is a great way to start your day. Oats provide protein and dietary fiber that will give you more long-lasting energy and vitamins and minerals that are essential to your daily intake. If you want to ensure that you have energy throughout your morning, making a bowl of oatmeal will help.
It’s best to choose organic rolled oats over quick oats because quick oats can be stripped of some vital nutrients.
Oatmeal contains a soluble fiber called beta-glucan that, when combined with water, forms a gel-like substance. This substance slows the absorption of glucose into the blood, providing longer-lasting energy.
What’s even better about oats than some other energizing foods is that there's many ways that you can enjoy them! You can use oats while baking as a replacement for flour, make oatmeal raisin bars or granola bars, and try out various toppings when making oatmeal. Customize your oatmeal to make it what you want! You can add other nutritious foods like bananas, berries, nuts, and chia seeds into your bowl.
Grass Fed Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt might not be for everyone, but it’s never a bad idea to give it a try! With it's slightly thicker consistency and tart taste, Greek yogurt provides protein and probiotics that are great for your health. Greek yogurt has less sugar and more carbs making it better for you nutritionally, two times better than regular yogurt.
You can use greek yogurt in smoothies and parfaits with berries and nuts. Standing alone, greek yogurt will do wonders in keeping you energized simply because of the protein it carries. Still, you can really make it into a delicious sweet treat with all your favorite ingredients!
If you are looking for bold, flavorful, and nutritious, sweet potatoes are a great ingredient to have. Sweet potatoes are fibrous with the skin on, making them slow to digest, which allows them to provide a steady stream of energy after consuming them. In just one serving of sweet potatoes, you can get up to 25 grams of complex carbs, which are stored and slowly broken down, releasing bits of energy that keep you sustained.
Eat sweet potatoes baked, diced up and sautéed, or pureed! No matter what, the health benefits will do you good!
If you are experiencing low energy and fatigue, it might be because you aren’t getting enough omega-3 fatty acids. Fatty fish like salmon is a great way to get omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce irritations associated with fatigue. Our bodies cannot produce omega-3 fatty acids on our own, so we rely on consuming them from foods like salmon!
Salmon is also a healthy source of several B vitamins, which are needed for energy production. B vitamins turn the food you eat into energy, so when you eat salmon, you ensure that you have enough of these nutrients inside of you to provide you with the energy you need. You can eat salmon cooked with rice and seaweed, raw with a whole grain bagel and low-fat cream cheese, or baked with greens and a salad.
On many of these lists, whether for energy or for gaining healthy fats, you might see avocado. Avocados are a superfood that are packed with proteins, fiber, and healthy fats. 80% of the carbs that are found in avocados are fiber, meaning that they supply a long-lasting stream of energy to those who eat them. The healthy fats that avocados contain can be stored and then used as energy sources later on when needed!
You can eat an avocado sliced up on top of a salad, spread on a piece of toast, or even plain with just a spoon to scoop it out! Avocados can be added to a variety of dishes and even made into delicious guacamole. There are many options, which makes it even easier to include in your daily routine.
Knowing What Foods To Eat With Vessel Health
Sometimes, knowing what your body needs can be difficult. Not all of us can just know what’s going on inside of our bodies. And once we do know how to make a difference, knowing what changes need to be made is not always clear-cut or obvious. If you’ve ever wondered about why you might be feeling low-energy or why you might feel fatigued, hit you in the middle of the day; there is a way to learn.
With Vessel, we provide you with information about your vitamin and mineral levels, stress levels, and even sleep levels. These things will contribute to how you feel daily, so understanding specifics can help you see where changes could be made. And don’t worry—here at Vessel, we also provide you with options and suggestions on changes you could make to improve your overall health.
Our Wellness Card, provides you with a at-home way of testing your levels, simply pee on the card, scan it into our app and your nutrient levels will show up, as well reminders (if set up) to drink more water, and suggestions on different activities you could participate in. All the information you’ve ever wanted to ask your doctor is available to you on your own phone, just like that!
So yes, incorporate the foods that we listed above into your diet to help you get out of your groggy funk, but also consider signing up with Vessel to learn about ways you can create a sustainable you!
Mikaela Frame See all the author’s articles