How nutrition can help your energy levels

In order to fuel your body with the energy it requires day to day, you should eat healthy balanced meals from the main food groups at regular intervals throughout the day.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are a good source of energy and they should make up 2/3 of your diet. Carbohydrates include foods such as potatoes, rice, pasta and bread. With pasta and rice choose wholegrain versions which will help to maintain energy levels throughout the day. These types of foods have a low glycaemic index and other examples include fruits, vegetables, beans, lentils, sweet potatoes and wholegrain bread. Please note that it is important to not eat foods low in the glycaemic index exclusively as it is not representative of all healthy foods but gives an idea of the types of carbohydrates that should be consumed as part of a healthy balanced diet.

Fruits & Vegetables

Fruit and vegetables are part of a balanced diet and can help us stay healthy. We should aim to consume five 80g portions of fruit and vegetables every day to lower the risk of serious health problems such as heart disease, strokes, type 2 diabetes and obesity. That’s five portions of fruit and veg altogether, not five portions of each! Fruit and vegetables taste delicious and there’s so much variety to choose from plus, they are an extremely rich source of vitamins and nearly all fruit and vegetables are low in fat and calories (provided you don’t fry them or roast them in lots of oil). That’s why eating them can help you maintain a healthy weight and keep your heart healthy.

Protein Foods

Protein foods are an essential energy source for your body. Foods such as salmon are a great choice as they contain essential omega 3 fatty acids and other vitamins and minerals which help with the conversion of food into energy. Yoghurts are also great to release energy but are aware of the high levels of sugar in certain ones!

Water

Water makes up two-thirds of the body and therefore is essential for many functions. Remaining hydrated allows all the bodily processes to work effectively and it is obviously very important to ensure you remain hydrated. Dehydration can cause a decrease in energy as the body’s primary aim shifts to preserving fluid levels within the body as opposed to converting energy. You should aim to drink 1.5-2 litres of water per day.

Below we have highlighted a few good energy foods which will help you maintain your energy levels throughout the day: Bananas, Beef (lean), Broccoli, Brown rice, Brussels sprouts, Chicken, Eggs, Flaxseed oil, Legumes, Milk, Oatmeal, Oranges, Peanut butter, Peas, Potatoes, Salmon, Soybeans, Spinach, Tuna, Turkey, Wheat germ and Yoghurt

At Tops Day Nurseries, we understand a healthy, balanced diet is essential for children’s health and well-being as a result we have designed a balanced menu to support growth and development using the Children’s Food Trust recommendations.

We’re also planning to have a fully vegetarian menu to not only provide nutritious meals to our children but to remain as sustainable as possible. Find out more here.

Posted in: General, Tops Cooking School, Health and Wellbeing