For all of you (rare yet existent) who stand against coffee and energy drinks, I have a solution for you. Energy can in fact be found in things that are not sold at Starbucks, found in vending machines or distributed by girls carrying Red Bull backpacks. These energy foods might not taste so bad either.
The trick in finding “energy” foods is to look for nutrients proven to help you focus and that don’t require a nap after consuming, which does not include sugar (disappointing, I know).
Some foods are better at giving us energy than others. Here are some that fall into this category.
Choosing the right energy bar
It can be hard to differentiate a healthy energy bar from one that’s basically a candy bar wrapped in “health-related” packaging. Who cares what it says on the front. Flip the package over and read the ingredients. If the ingredients read like a recipe, it’s more than likely a good option, according to Registered Dietitian Cynthia Sass. Sass said to turn down the energy bar if the ingredients resemble a science experiment.
Popcorn eaters consume almost a quarter more fiber than non-popcorn eaters, according to the Center for Human Nutrition in Omaha, Neb. This translates to a simple equation: more fiber equals more energy.
If you’re someone who likes to sip on something while studying, studies with green tea show the more you sip, the better. In a study found in the American Journal of Physiology, mice given green tea extract had higher swimming endurance than those who went without. The study suggests this energy-boost could also happen in humans.
We’ve never thought of water as an “energy-boosting” beverage. Even the slightest bit of dehydration can affect your energy. A study on young women in The Journal of Nutrition found that just over one percent of dehydration decreased their ability to concentrate and made tasks seem harder to accomplish.
Go for quality dark chocolate without a lot of added sugar, as sugar will eventually leave you in a slump. Flavonoids, a pigment in plants and an ingredient in dark chocolate, were found to improve cognitive performance in a study in the Journal of Nutrition.
Eggs contain lots of vitamin B and protein. A study in the journal Nutrition Today found eggs are a powersource for strength and energy.
The list just couldn’t end without a mention of eating your fruits and vegetables. No worries, I’ll spare you the cliche: an apple a day keeps the doctor away (or maybe I won’t). The truth is, the more color, usually the better. Unless we’re talking M&M’s.
Aside from all the wonderful vitamins and minerals, fruits and vegetables are also a great source of carbohydrates, our body’s main fuel source, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
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