A healthy diet made up from energy boosting foods is the perfect way to get you through the dull winter months. The great part is, you probably have most of these high energy foods sitting in your kitchen already.
It's common knowledge that diet can have a dramatic effect on your overall wellbeing, and when the weather gets downright depressing, it's important that you factor in the right food groups to help pump those energy levels, and beat back the dreaded winter doldrums.
Frida Harju, in-house Nutritionist at health and fitness app Lifesum spoke to us about the importance of eating healthily, and the best foods to help boost your energy levels this autumn. And as you'll see, many of the foods on the list are actually very easy to come by, and (more importantly) won't break the bank. Happy days.
'A versatile ingredient, brown rice is a great food to have if you are running low on energy. It's rich in manganese, a mineral that helps your body produce energy from the carbs and protein that you consume, leaving you feeling energised for longer.'
Qnola (the founder of Qnola, Danielle Copperman, is InStyle's go-to gluten-free expert. See some of her delicious gluten-free recipes, here)
'The new addition to the traditional breakfast foods, qnola is a twist on the traditional and often very sugary, granola. Using traditional ingredients like nuts and fruits, qnola also adds quinoa to the mix, which increases energy levels, speeds up digestion and improves concentration.'
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'Bananas are made up from three different types of sugar (fructose, glucose and sucrose) which get absorbed into your blood at different speeds, meaning that you will get a quick boost of energy and won’t suffer a slump as the sucrose will keep your blood levels steady.'
'Cashews, hazelnuts and almonds are all great energy boosters and make for a perfect mid-afternoon snack. Nuts are rich in magnesium which is essential when it comes to converting sugars into energy, as well as protein for an extra boost. However, make sure to only have a handful at once as nuts are very calorific.'
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'Salmon is known for containing high levels of omega-3, which is proven to lower cholesterol. However, salmon is also rich in niacin, vitamin B6 and riboflavin, all of which help your body convert eaten food into energy. Perfect served with some steamed veggies for a light lunch or dinner.'
'A great breakfast food, eggs will leave you feeling energised throughout the day. Considered a complete protein, eggs contain all of the amino acids that are required for a healthy diet, which as a result provides an energy boost and leaves us feeling fuller for longer.'
'Sweet potatoes, or the new avocado, are another food that can give you an energy boost throughout the day, as they contain plenty of vitamin B. The energy consumed from these potatoes is released slowly, meaning that you will not experience an energy slump in the afternoon and won’t feel bloated as sweet potato is easily digested.'
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'Adding a daily dose of full-fat, natural probiotic yoghurt to your diet is an easy way of giving yourself an energy boost that will carry you from morning until lunchtime. The complex carbohydrates found in yoghurt will give you a quick boost, whereas the combination of lactose and protein will release energy slowly, leaving you feeling energised for longer.'
'Rich in iron, spinach is essential if you are craving an energy boost. A lack of iron in the body can decrease the oxygen flow to the brain, leaving you feeling fatigued. To avoid an energy slump add some spinach to your lunch, or alternatively, if you aren’t a fan of salad, add a few spinach leaves to your morning smoothie.'
Working one or all of these simple energy foods into your daily diet should give you a much needed boost, and you won't need to spend a fortune shopping the list. Just remember to shop higher welfare, and/or organic if you have the extra pennies, and you'll soon see the benefits.
Bye-bye winter slump.