Eating for Energy and Health | 3 Tips for Moms

brought to you by Vive Health
Are you looking for natural, healthy ways to boost your energy
levels? With the end of another school year looming over you, you may already
be fretting about keeping up with the kids this summer. Don’t miss these tips
for incorporating smart, thoughtful food and drink choices into your daily diet
for more long-lasting energy.

Address Digestion Issues

Are you snagging all the great nutrients the food you eat has to
offer you? If you experience digestive
issues
, you
might not be, and this can definitely affect everything from your health to
your energy and overall wellbeing. Common signs of digestive problems include:

  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Weight management issues
  • Gas and bloating
  • Fatigue
  • Acid reflux and heartburn
  • Body odor and bad breath
  • Abdominal pain or cramping
  • Nutrient deficiencies (like anemia
    which contributes to low energy)
  • Thinning hair or skin issues
  • Conditions linked with systemic
    inflammation

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms longer than a couple
weeks, talk to your doctor and incorporate more of these healthy eating habits
in your daily meals:

Chew
your food longer – scarfing down a quick meal may seem like the easiest way to
keep up with the kids, however, chewing your food more thoroughly can aid
digestion and help your body get more of the nutrients it needs. Plus, you
learn to enjoy your food more!

Avoid
processed foods – if you can’t pronounce the ingredients on the nutrition
label, you might want to avoid it. Whole foods like fresh fruits, vegetables,
whole grains, legumes, and nuts offer you more beneficial vitamins and minerals
to aid digestion than processed ones. Sugar-laden, salty, and fried foods can
also leave you feeling sluggish, bloated, and fatigued.

Monitor
your fiber – did you know fiber is responsible for both intestinal motility as
well as firming up stool to keep you regular? Consume lots of natural fiber
sources throughout the day like brown rice and beans to avoid common digestion
issues.

Stay Hydrated

Maintaining the delicate water balance in your body is critical to
feeling your best. In fact, research shows that even mild dehydration (a loss
of 1 – 2% of your total body water) can result in cognitive
impairment
.

Strong energy levels rely on you remembering to drink lots of
water and replace any fluids you lose throughout the day via sweating or going
to the bathroom. If you’re looking for clever ways to up your water intake,
try:

  • Eating more water-rich foods like
    fresh fruits, vegetables, smoothies, soups, and stews
  • Carrying a reusable water bottle
    with you wherever you go
  • Setting water reminders on your
    smartphone or other mobile device
  • Drinking a full glass of water every
    time you use the restroom
  • Diluting sugary drinks with added
    water
  • Replacing soda with sparkling water
    or mineral water

Learn the Science

Food is fuel for your body, literally. When you eat, an array of
biological processes take place, helping break down food and extract nutrients.
Consuming a little knowledge about the science of eating could help you find
practical ways to eat for more energy. For example, did you know that the
saliva in your mouth has special enzymes in it that start to break down your
food as you chew? Chewing food thoroughly gives your stomach a leg up in the
digestion process.

Another important metabolic process is that of the stomach and
intestines breaking carbohydrates down into glucose and delivering it to the
bloodstream. From there, insulin (which the pancreas produces) helps to
transport that glucose to cells for quick energy or to storage in the body for
later use. If you load your morning breakfast with sugary sweets, your the
level of sugar in your blood will spike and then you’ll find yourself crashing
when it drastically drops after an hour or two. This both depletes your energy
levels and leaves you craving more unhealthy snacks.

And ever heard of MCT’s? Formally known as medium-chain
triglycerides, these biochemical building blocks form a special type of
saturated fat (like you find in coconut oil, whole milk, some cheeses, and
full-fat yogurt) that acts differently in the body from most fats. When
consumed, MCT’s are more easily absorbed than long-chain fatty acids and are
sent straight to the liver to be put to work instead of being stored as fat for
later. They can deliver quick energy to cells and have been shown to promote weight loss, support a healthy gut
biome, and even offer antioxidant properties.

Final Thoughts

Your day-to-day summer schedule will likely be full of lots of
swimming, outdoor time, running kids from camp to camp, and hopefully a little
rest and relaxation. Stay invigorated and fuel your energy levels naturally
with smart food and hydration choices. You’ll set a good example for your kids
too!

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