If you’re juggling corporate life, kids and their endless activities, your own social outings, and of course, all that various life admin − we hear you! Sometimes, meals and eating for our ‘best self’ fall on the backburner, as you set the oven and reach for another frozen pizza. But it takes a lot of energy to get from that first alarm in the morning to finally hitting the pillow at night, and only the right kind of food can fuel you all day.
The thing is, you don’t have to change your habits dramatically to make a difference in how you feel. It can be as easy as simple swaps or additions to what you’re already doing.
Let’s start with some general tips to incorporate into your everyday eating for a better mood and more energy. And then, we’ll look at some specific examples for workday brekkies and lunches.
Top tips for food that fuels
Eat a wide variety of vegetables – make them the king of every meal.
Feed your gut microbes – they love fresh fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, whole grains and legumes.
Keep hydrated – water is your top pick, but herbal teas are also great and can calm your nervous system which is great for workday stress
Eat protein at every meal – protein stabilises blood sugars and helps you feel fuller. It also provides a building block for hormones and neurotransmitters.
Choose the right fats – not all fats are bad. Select anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids like salmon, mackerel, chia deseeds, flaxseeds and walnuts, and good quality monounsaturated fats like nuts, avocado and extra virgin olive oil.
Balance your macros for energy – by including a protein, fat and carbohydrate source in each meal, you help stabilise your blood sugars and keep your energy levels high.
Swap white toast for wholegrain toast. Good toast toppers for energy include a combo of avocado, tomato, lean ham, salmon and egg
Swap just a coffee for a smoothie with banana, kiwi, berries, plain yogurt and flaxseed.
Swap cereal and milk for our slow-cooker apple and nut muesli and a dollop of Greek yogurt.
Lunch that lasts
Swap a curry and rice for a brown rice and veggie buddha bowl.
Swap a toasted white cheese sandwich for a chicken, baby spinach, feta and tomato wrap. Opt for a wholegrain, high-protein wrap if you can.
Swap a green salad for a broccoli and whole-wheat pasta salad with eggs and sunflower seeds. Recipe here. Or, check out some of our winter salad ideas.
Swap a takeaway burger for falafel, hummus, rocket and tomato on a wholegrain pita.
Snacks that satisfy
- A banana cut lengthwise, spread with nut butter and sprinkled with seeds (sesame, sunflower, pumpkin)
- Half cup of natural/Greek yoghurt, with a sprinkle of cinnamon and a tablespoon of raw nuts
- One-third cup of roasted chickpeas with herbs and spices
- A selection of vegetable sticks (carrot, celery, cucumber, capsicum, green beans) with one-third cup of hummus OR Greek yoghurt (with lemon juice and mint) OR creamy avocado dip/ guacamole.
- Apricot and quinoa protein balls. Check out our recipe.
Hopefully by now you’re feeling inspired to make some changes in your eating habits to help you power through your workday. If you like these ideas and want more of the good stuff, check out some of our past blog posts below:
As always, keep in mind that if you are considering changes to your diet and lifestyle, we suggest you seek advice from a Health Care Professional.