10 Best Energy Foods

10 Best Energy Foods
Carbohydrates are the primary human energy fuels, generating the glucose that makes work and play possible. With a bit of protein to sustain your endurance and some vitamins and minerals to battle inflammation, minimally processed carbs, which raise your blood sugar slowly and moderately, are the star players in a diet for active people. Sugary foods (candy, cookies, soda, fruit drinks), elevate your energy level briefly but then drop you to new lows as your body attempts to balance its sugar-fired insulin level. High-fat foods slow down digestion and thereby delay access to energy.
 

Lentil Soup

To a healthy carbohydrate load, lentils add heaps of fiber and don't cause gas. Kidney beans, black beans and chick peas are also good legume choices and are a great sources of cardiovascular-friendly folic acid.

 
 

Oranges

Natural sugars, carbohydrates, vitamin C and fiber combine to make oranges both quick and sustaining in their benefit to your energy level and cardiovascular system. Apples are another heart-healthy and cholesterol-lowering fruit, and figs are extremely rich in vitamins.

Blueberries

Like other fruits and vegetables, blueberries release sugar into your blood slowly and have high fiber content, lowering your cholesterol level and the risk of digestive problems. That same little blueberry contains cancer-preventing antioxidants as well as properties that slow cognitive decline associated with age.

Nuts and Seeds

The energy-boosting carbohydrate and protein loads in nuts and seeds are complemented by hefty amounts of vitamins, amino acids, monounsaturated fats and fiber. The large quantities of fat in nuts and seeds suggest they should be eaten in moderation.

Fish

The omega-3 fatty acids in fish increase your energy level by accelerating the flow of blood that distributes oxygen throughout your body. Cook your fish in olive oil to add an anti-inflammatory benefit.

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are the fountain-of-youth entry among energy-giving foods, as the vitamin A-fixing properties of the antioxidant beta-carotene are thought to slow the aging process. Sweet potatoes are high in carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins and minerals.

Rice Bran

Rice bran is packed with carbohydrates, fiber and antioxidants. It also contains minerals that assist in energy during exercise. Use it in equal parts with flour for baking, add it to casseroles or shake a bit of it on cereal.

Low-fat Yogurt

Yogurt's glycogen-replenishing capability and vitamin B-12 provide energy, help prevent fatigue and aid in muscle recovery after exercise.

Rolled Oats

Another great glucose stabilizer, rolled oats also aid in digestion, and they contain energy-making vitamin B and immune-strengthening zinc.

Whole-wheat Pasta

The health perks provided by whole wheat reach far beyond energy production; its high fiber and antioxidant levels reduce the chance of heart disease and diabetes. Compared with other pastas, the whole wheat variety is lower in calories and higher in fiber.

 

Article Written By Barry Truman

Barry Truman has published many outdoor activity articles in the past five years with International Real Travel Adventures, the Everett Herald and Seattle Post Intelligencer newspapers, Backpacking Light Magazine and Trails.com. He has a forestry degree from the University of Washington.

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