Getting Started: Foods can boost energy by supplying calories, by pushing your body to burn calories more efficiently, and, in some cases, by delivering caffeine. For a better mood, the best foods are those that help keep your blood sugar steady and trigger feel-good brain chemicals. Keep clicking to learn which foods and drinks do that.
Carbs may be the foe of fad diets, but they’re vital for boosting energy and mood. They are the body’s preferred source of fuel, plus they raise levels of the feel-good chemical, serotonin. The key is to avoid sweets, which cause blood sugar to spike and plummet, making you feel tired and moody. Instead, pick whole grains like whole-wheat bread, brown rice, and cereal. Your body absorbs whole grains more slowly, keeping your blood sugar and energy levels stable.
Cashews, Almonds, Walnuts, and Hazelnuts
These nuts are rich in protein and magnesium, a mineral that plays a key role in converting sugar into energy. Being low on magnesium can drain your energy. Good sources of magnesium include whole grains, particularly bran cereals, and some fish, including halibut.
Add Brazil nuts to the mix for selenium, a mineral that may be a natural mood booster. Studies have linked low selenium to poorer moods. Smaller amounts of selenium are also found in meats, seafood, beans, and whole grains. Don’t overdo it: Too much selenium is harmful.
Lean pork, lean beef, skinless chicken, and turkey are sources of protein that include the amino acid tyrosine. Tyrosine boosts levels of two brain chemicals (dopamine and norepinephrine) that can help you feel more alert and focused. Meats also contain vitamin B-12, which may help ease insomnia and depression.
Fatty fish, such as salmon, are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which may protect against depression and be good for heart health. Besides fish, sources of omega-3 include nuts and leafy, dark green vegetables.
Folate is another nutrient that may lower the risk of depression. Find it in leafy green vegetables (such as spinach and romaine lettuce), legumes, enriched grains, nuts, and citrus fruits.
Fiber helps keep your energy steady throughout the day. Many people don’t get enough fiber. You can fix that by eating more beans, whole fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
Staying hydrated can help you avoid getting tired. Some studies suggest even mild dehydration can slow your metabolism and sap your energy.
The solution is simple — drink plenty of water or other unsweetened beverages throughout the day 🙂 🙂