Wellness: Foods and habits to keep your energy levels up during this lockdown
Hope the lockdown is going smoothly with the few tips I shared in my earlier columns. How many of you have started taking care of your own health, eating wholesome food? The sooner you start, the better you will feel. Have you ever felt sluggish or fatigued even after having an active day? What food are you putting in your tummy to stay active or energetic? Did you know, foods that you eat can have a massive impact — both positive as well as negative — on your energy levels?
There are a few food ingredients or items which can actually boost our health and calories, regulate the blood sugar and blood pressure well, trigger the feel-good hormones in our brain to improve energy levels, enhance our mood, as well as increase metabolism, so that we can burn off more calories. And a few foods can do the exact opposite of the above mentioned. When it comes to meals to improve our energy and keep us healthy, it’s all about eating the right type of food.
Let’s check the list of a few food items below that will help us in increasing our energy levels:
● Green leafy vegetables are a good source of iron and fibre that is necessary for energy production in our body. These foods also make the body alkaline, which makes us feel more light and energetic. They are high in various nutrients like iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium and Vitamins like A, C, E and K, as well as folic acid, fibre and antioxidants that provide health benefits and boost up your energy levels.
● Whole grains like wheat, jowar, ragi, unprocessed rice and bajra are digested more slowly in the body, keeping the blood sugar and energy levels stable, and helping you feel satiated for longer, so that you avoid sweets, junk and empty carbs. Carbs are our body’s primary source of energy and they’re not as evil as they are shown more often. Wholegrains are absorbed slowly, giving you a longer-lasting energy boost.
● Vitamin C is an essential antioxidant needed by us to reduce the oxidative stress from body. This stress attributes to low energy levels. It also helps strengthen the immune system and protects us from various infections like common cold and cough, which sap our energy.
Also, when travelling, we are more susceptible to bacterial infections, which hamper the health. So, ensure that you consume foods and fruits rich in Vitamin C like lemons, oranges,sweet lime, guavas and pomegranates. Vitamin C is known to increase our metabolism, boost the immunity to fight out infections as well as increase the overall energy supply to the body.
● Eggs are a great source of iron and protein, which keep you fueled to give you sustainable energy throughout the day. Choline, a type of Vitamin B, is found in abundance in eggs that help for brain function and energy production.
● Yogurt/curd contains probiotics, which are well-known for being a key part of healthy digestion. These good bacteria improve overall digestion and can also help fight a weak immune system and boost our energy levels. And as I always stress, immunity begins in the gut, so we need to keep it healthy.
● Spicy Indian curries made with turmeric, cinnamon, cumin and other spices can boost energy levels because they are high in antioxidants, normalise blood sugar levels, and promote good blood circulation. Apart from this, they also help in improving the body’s immunity functions to keep you healthy and active.
● Getting quality sleep is utmostly important to feel energised upon waking up. If you are eating right and exercising well, but not giving your body time to rest and recover, then it all goes to vain. Sound sleep for 7-8 hours is what we should aim for, look at deep breathing or meditation to help improve your sleep. Make sure you keep all your light-emitting gadgets away before bedtime, so you can fall asleep better.
● Last but definitely not the least, water intake should always be optimal, depending on your activity level. The very first sign of dehydration is low energy, and feelings of sluggishness. So, we first need to improve water intake to reduce exhaustion and increase energy. Try to sip your water slowly, so that it gets absorbed and utilised well in body.
With all the above tips, you should stay active throughout the day, while keeping the blood circulation going well, and improving your nutrient uptake. Let’s pledge to stay healthy to create a better future!
Photo courtesy: Edgar castrejon on Unsplash