Lee-Anne Wann’s top five energy boosting foods
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the sea of nutritional advice out there, and some of this advice calls for extreme diets or strict exercise routines. But often the best way to nourish ourselves is by making small and simple changes, because when we do those things consistently they can add up to a big impact.
Our ambassador Lee-Ann Wann, a health and fitness consultant and performance nutritionist for the New Zealand Warriors, has five foods she suggests to busy clients who want to boost their energy, manage their weight and feel better in themselves.
We thought they were too good not to share!
Here’s what Lee-Anne told us about each of them:
1. Chia seeds
A rich source of nutrients and omega-3 fats, chia seeds are also high in protein and fibre, so they’re great for boosting energy and endurance. In water they absorb up to nine times their weight, so adding them to your morning smoothie or drink bottle will help to keep you hydrated throughout the day.
2. Coconut oil
This saturated fat can assist in managing your appetite. It’s also a great oil to cook with as it can handle high temperatures.
3. Yerba mate tea
Similar to green tea, and similarly rich in antioxidants, yerba mate is loaded with vitamins and minerals. It may have immune boosting effects, and could help to reduce high blood pressure. It does contain caffeine, so you might not want to be drinking it late into the afternoon, but using it cold as a smoothie base is a great energy booster first thing in the morning.
4. Goji berries
These are full of beta carotene, which can help to promote healthy skin, and they’re high in protein and amino acids. They taste really good with cacao nibs and are a great snack to ward off sugar cravings.
5. Coffee before your workout
Drinking a cup of black coffee before your morning exercise can supplement energy levels. Like anything in excess, too much caffeine isn’t recommended, so keep it to one cup per day.
Lee-Ann suggests that starting the day right will help to build a solid foundation and encourage making better choices later on.
Here are some of her ideas for combining these foods to get a better start to the day:
- Whip up a smoothie with goji berries and a teaspoon of coconut oil, using chilled yerba mate tea as the base. You can sweeten it with a handful of frozen fruit such as banana or berries for a nutrient packed breakfast.
- Add a teaspoon of coconut oil it to your morning coffee. It will help to buffer the stimulant effect without hindering your energy, and you’ll be slipping in your daily dose of good saturated fat without really noticing.
- Soak goji berries in water for 24 hours. Once drained you can use the berries for bliss balls or smoothies, and you’re left with a naturally flavoured water filled with vitamins to sip on throughout the day. If you like, add a teaspoon of chia seeds to help keep you hydrated and feeling fuller for longer.
Do you have any foods that give you an energy boost? Why not share them by leaving a comment?