Everybody knows that poor nutrition can lead to weight gain, but did you know that diet can affect energy levels throughout the day as well? It’s all too easy to fall into a cycle of unhealthy eating habits – especially when we’re busy or stressed at work. But by ensuring your diet is balanced with the proper amounts of protein, fibre and healthy carbohydrates you’ll be able to maintain consistent energy all day long! In this article we’ll discuss a few easy tips to keep your productivity up, and your workday full of energy.
1) Include protein and high-fibre carbs with each meal
Avoid a sugar rush – and crash – by combining a filling source of protein with healthy, high-fibre carbohydrate sources.
- Protein sources include: lean meats, fish, Greek yogurt, eggs, milk, cheese, beans, lentils, nuts, and seeds.
- Fibre-rich carbohydrates include: fruits, veggies, oatmeal, bran, brown rice, beans, peas, lentils, and whole grain breads and crackers.
2) Add snacks between meals
Keep your energy up with regular snacks that include a good source of protein.
PRO TIP: Try Greek yogurt with berries, a banana with peanut butter, or raw veggies with hummus. For more tips on healthy snacks check out the Horizon Recipe Booklet.
3) Avoid added sugars
Added sugars in our food and drinks cause drastic spikes and dips in energy that then actually make fatigue worse – what goes up must come down! So, stick to natural sources of sweetness, like fruit, and avoid highly processed items such as cookies and sugary pop.
4) Stay hydrated
Dehydration is common and can be a huge drain on energy. Aim for at least 8-10 cups of water per day. Keep a water bottle with you to encourage you to drink throughout the day. If you need some help with kick-starting your water intake habits, join our 30 Day Water Challenge.
5) Stick to natural foods
80% of what you eat should be natural, minimally processed foods. Avoid foods with long ingredient lists and stick to mostly single-ingredient items. Think fruits, veggies, meat, fish, eggs, beans, lentils, nuts, and whole grains.
Andrea Stokes, Registered Dietitian, BASc, RD
Andrea holds a Bachelor of Applied Science Degree at Ryerson University in Toronto. She completed her dietetic internship with Eastern Health in 2013 and she is currently a Registered Dietitian with the Newfoundland and Labrador College of Dietitians. She also holds a board position with NLCD. Andrea has experience working in a variety of clinical and community settings.