Unlike some wellness activities, eating well doesn’t have to take a lot of time. Here are two very simple nutrition strategies which you can implement today even if you have a hectic schedule.
Eat most of your food by 4 p.m.
Eat every three to five hours in order to consume the vast majority of your food before 4 p.m. This is important to help maintain a healthy weight and avoid overeating later in the day. It also helps maximize productivity and stamina through the work day and stave off that “hangry” feeling. Oddly enough, the most common meals for people to skip are breakfast and lunch, which help us fight fatigue and give us the crucial energy to focus and concentrate for the day. Energy levels are typically lowest in mid-afternoon, a popular time to grab a snack.
Marry carbs and protein
Carbohydrates (carbs) are found in grains/starches such as bread, pasta, and rice along with fruits and veggies. You can think of carbs like “gasoline” to fuel the brain and muscles. Carbs are also comfort foods; they boost serotonin in the brain which improves mood. If you have insufficient carbs in your meals your brain will not have the needed energy to get you through the day.
Protein is found in food such as meat, poultry, seafood, dairy foods, eggs, nuts/seeds, legumes such as lentils, chick peas or black beans as well as soy foods such as tofu and soy milk. Protein provides fullness and sustained energy simply because it is slow to digest. If you have missed a source of protein in your meals you will experience energy highs and lows.
Meals and snacks that have both carbs and protein will keep your energy consistent through the day and help you feel like you are riding a train rather than a rollercoaster.