Energy boosts: Food to get you in the exercise mood

Get more energy from the food you eat! Here are some tips to get you started:

Consume a wide variety of whole foods This means eating more vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, seeds, healthy fats, and lean protein

Eat the rainbow! Eat a variety of different color fruits and vegetables to maximize antioxidant intake and energy

Get more iron from plants Think beans, lentils, seeds, spinach and other dark leafy greens. Consume with Vitamin C rich foods to boost absorption 

Start your day with a boost! Add fiber, healthy fats, or lean protein for a more filling and energizing breakfast

 Limit foods and beverages that can cause crashes: sugary foods and drinks, caffeine (too much!), and alcohol

Try not to skip meals After all, food is fuel!

Incorporate more of the foods that are high in energizing vitamins and minerals: beans, lentils, legumes, nuts, seeds, peanuts, fatty fishes like salmon, oats, barley, brown rice, sweet potatoes, mushrooms, and even pure cacao or dark chocolate – 70 percent or more!

Try this quick, easy, and energizing “recipe” for a tasty breakfast or dessert:

Fruit and Chocolate Yogurt Parfait

Prep Time: 5 minutes Total Time: 5 minutes Yield: 1

Ingredients

  • 1 C Plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1 inch square of 70 percent or higher dark chocolate
  • 1/2 cup assorted fresh berries 

Instructions

Fill a small bowl with yogurt; stir in vanilla extract.

Put dark chocolate in a zip-top bag and crush, or place on cutting board and shave with a paring knife. Sprinkle chocolate onto yogurt.

Top with fresh berries. Enjoy! 

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Alison Bradow is the chronic disease prevention coordinator at the YMCA of Metropolitan Lansing. Contact her at  (517) 827-9656 or at ymcaoflansing.org. 

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