Eating for Energy

Learn how to become a better eater with help from Ellie Krieger.

Not only what you eat, but when you eat can have a profound effect on your energy level. Follow these simple rules to keep yourself energized all day long.

Eat regular meals and snacks.
The golden rule for high energy eating is to keep your blood sugar (aka glucose) steady by never to going more than 4 to 5 hours without eating. Glucose is the brain's main fuel. When it dips you get that foggy tired feeling. Prevent that and stay energized by giving your brain and your body a steady flow of food.

Include some protein in each meal.
Lean meat, fish, beans, egg, low-fat dairy and nuts all count as protein. So get that pasta dish with some chicken and shrimp in it, or add some beans and nuts to your lunch salad.

Avoid large meals.
No one knows exactly why, but large fatty meals make you feel tired. Keeping meals light helps keep you energized. So put down your fork when you reach a 5 or 6 on a scale of one to ten. (1 = starving and 10 = "Thanksgiving full").

Stay well hydrated.
Fatigue is one of the first signs of dehydration, so make sure you drink enough. On average women need 9 cups of fluid a day and men need 13. But everyone is different. How do you know you're drinking enough? Your thirst is actually a pretty accurate guide. So here's some down-home advice: if you are thirsty, drink.