15 Snacks to Boost Energy & Productivity

June 6, 2016

 

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15 Snacks to Boost Energy & Productivity

We all get tired at some point during the day. Instead of reaching for a short-lived jolt when the slump hits you, choose a healthy snack that will perk you up and keep you going. The key, says dietician Lisa Moskovitz, is to pick a snack that’s low in sugar and saturated fat to “ensure your body has the fuel to keep going so you can easily complete all of your daily tasks”. Here are a few snacks to consider the next time you hit that midday slump.


1) CACAO (aka Raw Chocolate)

Serving recommendation:

55 to 115 grams, depending on the recipe.

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

Mg           Cacao is one of the best sources of antioxidants on the planet.

Fe            A great source of magnesium, iron, manganese and chromium.

Cr, Mn    Contains anandamide, which improves mood and energy production.


2) KALE CHIPS

Serving recommendation:

One-fourth of a bunch or a 70-gram bag of store-bought kale chips.

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

A               Gives you a healthy dose of iron, as well as vitamins A and C.

C              Vitamin C plays a role in ensuring your body can properly absorb iron.

K               Kale is also an excellent source of vitamin K, which helps blood clot normally.


3) DRY-ROASTED EDAMAME

Serving recommendation:

55 grams of dry-roasted edamame

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

Edamame, or young soya beans, contain ample amounts of:

Fe            Iron, an essential mineral that helps transport oxygen throughout the body.

Folate, which helps ensure blood and other nutrients reach the brain properly.


4) HEMP SEEDS

Serving recommendation:

15 grams

  • of hemp seed oil in salad dressing.
  • of hemp protein in smoothies & yoghurt.
  • of toasted hemp seeds plain or on salads and fruit.

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

Hemp is a complete protein with a low glycemic index.

A good source of fibre, protein and omega-3 fatty acids.


5) CHIA SEEDS

Serving recommendation:

15 grams of chia added to cereal, smoothies, yoghurt or salads. Also as recommended in various pudding and baked goods recipes.

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

Chia contains plenty of protein, fibre, good fats, iron, calcium, zinc and magnesium.

Mg           Magnesium helps maintain blood sugar levels.

Zn            Zinc produces enzymes that make energy.


6) CHICKPEAS

Serving recommendation:

225 grams of chickpeas.

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

Chickpeas are high in protein, fibre, iron vitamin B6 and magnesium.


7) CRACKERS & HUMMUS

Serving recommendation:

4 whole grain crackers with 15 grams of hummus.

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

The whole grain crackers provide complex carbs.

The carbs break down into sugars more slowly than simple carbs.

This causes them to produce energy over a longer period of time, rather than spiking your blood sugar, only for it to crash a short while later.

Hummus is high in protein, iron and antioxidants.


8) HARD-BOILED EGG

Serving recommendation:

1 large hard-boiled egg

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

Eggs contain plenty of iron and protein for lasting energy and fullness.


9) QUINOA (pronounced “Keen Wah”)

Serving recommendation:

15 grams cooked:

  • Added to baked goods, like cookies
  • In chili, soups, stir fries, salads and stews
  • As a nutritious substitute for rice or potatoes
  • For a breakfast cereal by adding fruit, cinnamon and honey

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

Called “Mother Grain”, by the Incas, quinoa is 20% protein.

B               A pseudo-cereal, it is rich in B vitamins, which convert carbohydrates into energy.


10) FRUIT & PEANUT BUTTER OR NUTS

Serving recommendation:

  • One banana, 225 grams of grapes, 55 grams of dried fruit or a small apple
  • 30 grams of peanut butter or 55 grams of nuts

WHY THE FRUIT PROVIDES A BOOST:

Fructose brings quick energy.

Fibre brings longer lasting energy.

WHY THE NUTS PROVIDES A BOOST:

A combination of good fats and protein provide steady energy and satiety.

B6            The vitamin B6 in nuts converts tryptophan in bananas to serotonin, improving mood.


11) TOFU OR YOGHURT & BANANA SMOOTHIE

Serving recommendation:

  • Blend a banana and 115 grams of silken tofu or mix Greek yoghurt with 115 grams of soya milk.
  • Add 15 grams of honey and 30 grams of cocoa powder and blend well.

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

  • 17 grams of protein for energy.
  • 10 grams of fibre for long-lasting fullness.
  • High levels of magnesium and potassium, which helps maintain energy levels.

12) STUFFED HARD-BOILED EGGS

Serving recommendation:

  • Hard-boil eggs and stuff them with fresh guacamole.
  • For guacamole, just mash an avocado with a little salsa and lemon.

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

  • Healthy fats and protein for energy.
  • 10 grams of fibre for long-lasting fullness.
  • High levels of potassium.

13) TRAIL MIX

Serving recommendation:

  • Mix 14 grams of almonds with 55 grams each of peanuts and dried cranberries
  • Add 5 grams dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Change it up by adding raisins instead of cranberries or by using other types of nuts like cashews or walnuts.

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

A healthy combination of fat and protein.

E               An easy snack to carry with you anytime

C              Includes vitamins E and C

Provides potassium, magnesium and fibre.


14) TURKEY ROLL-UPS

Serving recommendation:

2 slices of turkey and 2 breadsticks or pretzel rods

  • Spread each slice of turkey with mustard or mango chutney.
  • Wrap each slice of turkey around a sesame breadstick or
  • Tie them up with a chive or green onion strip.

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

A low-calorie, high-protein snack.

K               Provides potassium for quick energy.

An easy, quick snack to make.


15) GOJI BERRIES

Serving recommendation:

Add a handful of berries or a dash of juice to tea, smoothies, soups, cereal or trail mix.

  • Use when baking cookies or muffins.
  • Used for thousands of years in Chinese medicine to enhance energy and healthy hormone levels, goji berries are also available juiced.

WHY IT PROVIDES A BOOST:

A complete protein containing 18 amino acids.

B2            75 grams contains the 100% daily requirement of vitamin B2 and iron.

Fe            Provides healthy fats like linoleic acid.

Increases blood flow for instant energy

Includes vitamins C and A, plus calcium, zinc and selenium


It’s normal to feel tired in the afternoon, but the right snack can help eliminate drowsiness and improve your mood. What’s important is to pick snack foods that are good for you, like those that contain plenty of fibre, protein and good fats. These foods will fill you up and keep you moving, instead of providing you with a jolt of energy that burns out quickly.


Brought to you by GoToMeeting. Boost your productivity and meet online with simple-to-use video-conferencing.

For more productivity tips, visit gotomeeting.com.au.

 

Sources: greatest.com, health.com, huffingtonpost.ca, calorieking.com, madamenoire.com, mensfitness.com, caring.com, mentalhealthy.co.uk, lifehack.org, fitnessmagazine.com, authoritynutrition.com, medicalnewstoday.com

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