We have all had this feeling before, the morning has been great, we are full of energy and knocking things off our to-do list. We are fired up and getting hungry so we head out for lunch. When we return to our offices things take a turn for the worse. We feel way too full, we get tired and the only thing our hands are doing is loosening the top button of our pants.
This is a very common feeling, but it doesn’t have to be. Wouldn’t you love to feel even more alert, more awake and performing at peak levels after lunch? Just think how your productivity would increase and the things you could accomplish. I am going to show you some basic eating patterns to follow to ensure that not only do you skip the mid-day crash but you hurdle it and never look back.
Most of what we eat can be broken down to glucose. Glucose is our fuel, keeping the brain awake and alert. The most important part is that we have full control of how we release glucose to our body and our brains. Certain foods release glucose quickly while other foods more slowly but sustainably. Slowly and sustainably is optimal.
The brain works best with about 25 grams of glucose circulating in the bloodstream, this is equivalent to the amount found in a banana. The tricky part is how to get those 25 grams, you can crush a donut or eat a small bowl of oats and it will have no difference in the short term brain activity. Oats will release sugar as glucose much slower allowing steady glucose levels and more consistent focus and attention levels.
Foods with a low glycemic index gradually release glucose into your bloodstream. The gradual release helps minimize blood sugar swings and optimizes brainpower and mental focus.
One thing to keep in mind over the day is to never go hungry. I recommend eating a light snack in between meals low on the glycemic index to keep your glucose levels in check. Also stay away from the simple carbs like white rice, soft drinks and candies, basically foods packed with sugars. These food will give you a burst of energy and leave you crashing in the afternoon.
Start your morning with a few glasses of cold water a good breakfast made up of proteins, complex carbs and good fats.
Eating every 2.5 to 3 hours is ideal. Don’t over eat and make sure you are hydrating your body properly throughout the day. I recommend 3-6 litres of water a day adding some fresh lemon and lime for electrolytes.
Here is a sample meal plan to keep you firing on all cylinders and maintaining your energy levels throughout the day:
Breakfast Protein Shake:
Steal cut oats
Chicken with no sodium seasoning
Roasted Vegetables cooked with coconut oil
Protein powder with water
Roasted yams with cinnamon
Asparagus with fresh lemon and black pepper
2 Whole eggs
2 Egg whites
3 oz cheddar cheese