Our energy is integrally connected to the foods we eat. The foods we choose to put in our body can either boost our energy, or drag us down. Here are great energizing foods that will support our general well-being and health. There are 25 of ‘em, so I’ll get right into it!
Everyone knows “an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” and it’s true! Apples contain lots of vitamins and minerals, and are also a rich source of flavonoids and polyphenols, both of which are powerful antioxidants. Try eating them in the morning and include in smoothies.
Bananas are one of the best sources of potassium, which helps maintain normal blood pressure and heart function in the body. Bananas are a convenient snack with a peel that you can throw in your purse or carry-on, that is sure to boost your energy levels during an afternoon lull.
3. Red Peppers:
Bell peppers are bursting with antioxidant vitamins A and C- also great for skin beauty. Red peppers in particular contain lycopene, which has been linked to cancer prevention. Red peppers are great to snack on if you want that satisfying crunch. Try dipping in salsa for an afternoon snack.
Hummus is a healthy energy-boosting snack that is sure to satisfy the creamy-salty cravings. It’s a great energy booster when paired with other items on this list, like red peppers, carrots and cucumbers. Try the Raw Chickpea-Free Hummus recipe with zucchini instead of cooked chickpeas, and raw tahini. You’ll still get amino acids and calcium from the raw tahini, but in a lighter, non-starchy form.
5. Organic Dark Chocolate:
If you have a sweet tooth, organic dark chocolate is sure to satisfy those cravings, and is better than having dessert snacks that contain refined starches, which will deplete B vitamins that we need for energy. I recommend non-dairy, organic dark chocolate because it contains the highest amount of powerful antioxidants. There is some sugar in it, so limit portion size to 1-2 oz a day.
6. Pumpkin seeds:
These seeds are packed with minerals such as magnesium, iron, and calcium, vitamin K and protein. These seeds will be sure to satisfy that crunchy craving when you need a boost. Lighter than nuts, try a quarter of a cup of them in the afternoon a few hours after lunch, especially if you are working out after work or have a long stretch before dinner.
Carrots are high in fiber, so they are a great crunchy way to take the edge off hunger, while providing some good nutrition. They contain high amounts of Vitamin A, in the form of Beta-Carotene, which is good for the eye sight. Since they are a veggie which combines well with most other foods, they are great to snack on throughout the day.
Celery is a refreshing source of fiber, vitamin C and B-vitamins. It has a diuretic effect, due to its balance of the electrolytes potassium and sodium, which helps to flush out excess fluid from the body. Celery is also believed to have anti-inflammatory properties. It is also great with hummus for a more substantial snack, or try adding it to the Glowing Green Smoothie (see below!)
9. Pureed veggie soup:
Making a pureed veggie soup is a great way to get in those veggies on a cold day. Nothing is more comforting than a warm bowl of soup, so try boosting your energy with a bowl of pure veggies! Because the soup is blended, your body can easily absorb the nutrients that become readily available, without wasting energy breaking them down.
10. Lemon Water:
It may sounds simple, but sipping water with lemon (cold or hot) is known to provide energy. One of the biggest forms of fatigue is dehydration, so make sure to sip up! Lemon gives an added boost of vitamins and enzymes. Be sure to start your day with a cup of hot water with lemon.
Oats are one of the healthiest carbs you can find. Try some natural oats (oat groats are my favorite) in the morning, at least 25 minutes after you’ve had some fruit or if you are still hungry after having the Glowing Green Smoothie. Sprinkle some cinnamon on top for even more health benefits and more flavor.
12. Glowing Green Smoothie:
Try blending up a batch of my signature smoothie when you feel low on energy. It’s packs a huge amount of greens into one drink, with a bit of fruit to sweeten the taste so it is delicious. Loaded with vitamins, enzymes, minerals, amino acids and filling fiber, this is my daily ritual for breakfast and a mid-afternoon snack.
Watermelon is a great snack, especially in the summer when it’s in season. It contains lycopene, which as mentioned earlier, has been linked to cancer prevention. Be sure to eat it on an empty stomach to experience its full benefits. As with other non-starchy/non-fatty fruits, it digests quickly and needs to pass out of the stomach so it doesn’t prematurely ferment behind slower-digesting foods.
14. Coconut water:
Drinking coconut water is one of the best ways to naturally rehydrate the body. It is packed full of electrolytes and has detoxifying properties. Young coconuts are best, but are not always convenient (!). You can find coconut water in cartons in most health food grocery stores these days.
15. Green Salad:
There’s nothing like a nice, green salad to provide an energy burst. Greens are filled with vitamins and minerals, and digest fairly quickly so you’ll feel the energy. Use a light dressing that includes lemon, and this is a perfect way to get some nutrition when feeling low on energy.
Pineapple is easy to digest, and contains the enzyme bromelain, which helps aids in digestion and has cleansing properties. Again, be sure to eat on an empty stomach and alone.
Blueberries are a delicious, energetic snack. These berries are also known to promote brain function and boost energy, so they are a good thing to eat before a test, or when you need to focus. They are abundant and in season at the moment!
Filled with fiber and healthy fats and fiber, avocados are one of my daily staples. They are awesome to keep your skin smooth and youthful as well. They are also known to help lower cholesterol. If you don’t like to eat them plain, try adding avocados to salads.
19. Raw Granola:
Granola is a great snack when you’re feeling hungry mid-day. Make sure you choose a granola that is not overly processed (a raw variety if you can find it), is preferably gluten-free and does not have a ton of added sugar. Its best to try and make your own, with a base of buckwheat groats.
20. Herbal Tea:
This is a nice thing to sip when you don’t want to eat anything late at night or in the mid-morning or afternoon. Make sure to go caffeine free. I suggest red rooibos because it contains lots of antioxidants and has a nice flavor.
21. Dried Figs:
Dried figs are an amazing blood purifier and help dissolve mucus and toxins from our system. Make sure you choose brands that don’t add sugars or additives. Figs have a fairly high amount of sugar, so really limit portion size to only a few. If you have Candida or another sugar issue, you should avoid dried and regular fruit.
A great snack for some fiber, tons of vitamin C, as well as biotin (great for skin/hair/nails) and folic acid. Strawberries contain high levels of antioxidants. Perfect for the summer!
Quinoa is a great grain to add to your diet because it is a complete protein, and contains all the essential amino acids. It is one of the most nutritious, filling grains you can choose.
Cucumber is known to be a beauty vegetable and full of the beauty mineral silicon. It’s a delicious, hydrating and nutrient-rich snack that tastes great on its own, or dipped in hummus. Try making cucumber salad with raw apple cider vinegar.
25. Raw Sauerkraut:
Sauerkraut is a probiotic-rich food. Probiotics help create B vitamins which will be sure to give you the energy you need throughout your day. Try my Probiotic & Enzyme Salad recipe so you can make your own raw sauerkraut for cents a day.