If you wake up feeling tired even after a full night of sleep and feel like you’re not running at 100%, you should take a look at what you’ve been eating. Nutritional deficiencies, eating too much of the wrong thing, and not getting enough of the right vitamins and minerals can make you sluggish, slow, and low on energy. Here are a few foods that will give you a big boost to your health, energy, and well-being.
If you are feeling sluggish and tired all day, every day, you may not be getting an adequate amount of iron in your diet. This is especially true for menstruating women. A lack of iron will leave you feeling groggy and “under the weather”, so here are some foods to power up on:
Red meats, chicken, turkey, and fish. If you are a vegetarian, you can still get a good amount of iron from lentils, spinach, and beans (especially soybeans). There are also cereal brands available that fortify their bran with iron. Another tip: make sure to add Vitamin C to your diet since iron doesn’t easily absorb into the body without it.
Do you get the jitters a lot? You may already know that caffeine causes that jittery feeling, but ingesting too many refined carbs can do the same thing. Foods that contain a lot of white flour like cookies, white bread, and sweets will cause your blood sugar levels to rise. Your body will them produce an excessive amount of insulin which will give you the shakes and put you on edge. Once your blood sugar lowers, you will feel tired and sluggish. Choosing the right food options is imperative to controlling your blood sugar levels.
In order to keep your blood sugar levels from going on this “roller coaster” ride, make sure the meals and snacks you eat contain lean protein, healthy fats, and unrefined carbs. If you need some ideas, try these foods: whole oats, whole grain bread, pasta, & cereals, brown rice, legumes, bright colored fruits and vegetables, and brown rice.
Feeling forgetful? You may have a lack of omega-3 fatty acids and/or vitamin B12. Both of these nutrients are brain boosters and could be the cause of your forgetfulness. DHA, which is a type of fatty acid, is contained in omega-3s and helps to promote well-functioning synapses and brain processes. both brain-boosting nutrients — could be to blame.
Vitamin B12 is also an important brain boosting nutrient. If you do not ingest enough of this vital nutrient, you may experience confusion, fatigue, and numbness. Here are some foods to consider when you need help focusing: fish (mackerel, trout, herring, tuna, and salmon), cheese, eggs, ham, or yogurt.
Tired of getting those “Charlie horse” cramps or other shooting pains in your muscles? Consider ingesting foods high in electrolytes. When your body is low on potassium and magnesium, it can cause cramps and contractions in your muscles, even if you haven’t worked out lately.
If you find yourself getting cramps in your feet or calves way too often, stock up on these power foods: bananas, baked potatoes, prunes, oranges, nuts, green leafy vegetables, and unrefined grains. Remember that lack of hydration can also be a culprit of cramping so make sure you are getting enough water.