On a recent podcast with The Midult, our in-house dietitian Imogen Wolsey shared her tips for eating for energy. When it comes to nutrition and diets it doesn’t need to be complicated, and eating to have energy is actually really easy. Imogen starts with the basics…
1. Regular and well-balanced foods are important
It’s important to eat every 3-4 hours to make sure your body has consistent energy and is fuelled throughout the day. It’s also important to remember to try and keep your food well-balanced with all your different macronutrients – carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Don’t be afraid of carbohydrates, after all they are our body’s main form of energy. We aren’t talking about refined carbs but rather complex carbs like wholegrain bread.
A well-balanced snack could be a slice of wholegrain toast, with a source of protein on top such as eggs and sliced avocado as your source of healthy fats. Not only is this a delicious meal but it is also packed with nutrients that will keep you going throughout the day.
2. You don’t have to cut out sugar, just pair it up
I’m sure we're all happy to hear that we don’t need to cut out sugar in our diets, but rather accommodate other things to balance it out. If you do opt for a sugary food, don’t have it by itself. Pair it with something equally as delicious with different nutrients. For example, if you choose to have a piece of fruit and a coffee in the morning, include some nut butter in there too. This will slow down your rate of digestion and keep you going for longer. The sugar from the fruit will last longer when paired with the protein and fat in the nut butter.
3. Variety is key
A diet full of variety is really important and not just for energy, but for your mood and gut health too. Ever heard of good-mood food? These are meals that support mental health and brain function. For example, there’s an amino acid called tryptophan which is found in high-protein foods like turkey or walnuts. Tryptophan raises serotonin in the body which is our feel-good hormone. Then there’s omega 3 fatty acids, which have been associated to lower levels of depression. This can be found in foods like salmon and oily fish.
3 quick tips your gut will thank you for
- Take it back to basics ensuring you have a well-balanced diet with a range of micronutrients and macronutrients. This will feed the different bugs in your gut and encourage a thriving ecosystem.
- Trying to manage stress is key for gut function, the gut-brain axis is always something to keep in mind. Find some good stress coping mechanisms, your gut will love you for them!
- Get outside in nature. This exposes your gut to an entire array of microbes and can also be a stress-reliever, ticking off our previous point.