Energy food by Vanessa Ascencao, Nutritional Consultant
Cutting down or eliminating certain foods may counter depleted energy which is common in the first few weeks of a new year due to overindulgence over the holiday season.
Foods which cause energy depletion include wheat, sugar, alcohol and stimulants like coffee and cigarettes. Cut down on these, get enough sleep and increase exercise to improve energy levels. In addition, dehydration, lack of sleep, attitude, self-esteem and relationships all affect energy levels.
Focus on eating energy boosting foods at the right time and in the right combination for optimal digestion and absorption of nutrients. As many have compromised gut systems and suffer from bloating, gas, heartburn, IBS and constipation, the body does may not absorb all nutrients. A pro-biotic may assist.
The following are my daily tips for optimal health and energy:
- Drink a mug of hot water and lemon every morning. This is a great way to kick-start the digestive system and boost the liver.
- At least 70% of the diet should include raw and cooked green vegetables.
- Include good fats such as coconut oil, avocado, fatty fish, raw seeds and nuts, chia seeds and fish oils.
- Good quality, free range and organic protein is best.
- Eat fresh fruit in season such as blueberries, cherries, plums and mangoes.
- Make your own treats using healthy ingredients.
- Drink clean, filtered water
- Focus on nutrients and not calories and enjoy your food by eating slowly and consciously.
- Take Marcus Rohrer Spirulina, a nature-based multi-nutrient which helps boost immunity, energy, promotes optimal gastrointestinal flora and digestion, helps control blood sugar levels and assists in suppressing inflammation and hunger.
Read more here and here.
- Check your iron, B12, and vitamin D levels and supplement if necessary, especially with vitamin sprays. Ask your doctor to check your liver function.
My meal tips:
Breakfast: a smoothie made from almond milk, fresh fruit, a scoop of protein and coconut oil or free range eggs with spinach and tomatoes or quinoa porridge with fresh berries and almond milk or fresh fruit and almonds. Avoid excess coffee, bread, cereal, sugar-loaded yoghurts and spreads.
Snacks: raw unsalted nuts, fresh fruit, hummus and veggies, homemade grain-free snacks or dark chocolate – 70% and above. Avoid snacking too much, leave at least 5 hours between meals. Avoid pre-packed foods, pies, chips and fizzy drinks.
Tips to improve focus: Omega 3, protein and exercise is essential for a clear focused mind and improved energy levels. Avoid sugar, increase good fats and ensure optimal digestion.
Marcus Rohrer Spirulina is available at most Clicks, Dis-Chem and major pharmacies.