Avoiding those daily slumps is easier than you think! From early-morning breakfast to after-dinner dessert, we offer a collection of delicious recipes -- featuring fresh superfoods and other mood-boosting ingredients -- that will help you eat your way to energy.
When it comes to pasta, it's OK to indulge. "The carbohydrate-rich food increases seratonin levels, which helps lower stress," says Angela Lemond, RDN, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. We chose whole wheat orzo pasta as the base for this scrumptious veggie-chicken salad.
Whether they're poached, scrambled, or sunny-side-up, eggs are little powerhouses of nutrition that contain loads of protien. Scoop some into whole wheat pita rounds along with avocado and lean Canadian bacon for a satisfying start to your day.
Combat junk-food cravings with a healthy helping of homemade muesli. Starring oats, almonds, and flaxseeds, this cinnamon-coated snack contains magnesium and omega-3 oils, which help lift your mood and nourish your nervous system. Toss in banana chips or raisins for natural sweetness.
"Individuals who start their day with a balanced breakfast tend to have reduced appetites compared to those who skip their morning fuel," says Jennifer McDaniel, RDN, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. That's why we fill up on the works: hearty whole grain bread, protein-packed eggs, and healthy slices of avocado.
This make-and-take salad sports layers of leafy greens, lean pork, and naturally sweet peaches. Drizzle it in our homemade pineapple dressing -- made with fresh ginger -- to help lift your mood and encourage alertness.
Sweet, snappy, and a little bit spicy, these shrimp tostadas are loaded with energy-boosting ingredients. Pile on lettuce and pink grapefruit, then add chopped onions and hot red chile peppers (high in capsaicin) to kick up immunity and metabolism.
"Dark chocolate is a powerful antioxidant that helps improve blood flow, increase energy, and enhance mood," says Jessica Crandall, RDN, a spokesperson for the Acadamy of Nutrition and Dietetics. We drizzle just a bit on banana slices, then freeze 'em for a healthy, icy-cool treat.
The trendy "grain" quinoa -- a complete protein that's rich in B vitamins and fiber -- makes a delicious base for this garlicky, squash-studded salad. Toss in a handful of fresh mint leaves to make it instantly energizing.
Kale is all the rage these days. And why wouldn't it be? After all, it's brimming with calcium and vitamins E and K -- all of which boost energy and overall health. A sprinkling of salt and pepper enhances its leafy-green goodness in this crunchy chip recipe.
Start your day on a happy note with a plate of fresh banana pancakes. Ruby-red raspberries and chopped dark chocolate -- both rich in antioxidants -- give them a fantastic facelift. Just be sure to watch your portions, says Angela Lemond, RDN, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. "All you need is about 1.5 ounces of chocolate to receive the mood-boosting benefits."
Put a little extra pep in your step with an espresso-infused smoothie recipe. Ours blends the caffeine-filled favorite with potassium-rich bananas and a bit of honey for a drink that's sure to perk you up.
Shredded coconut and golden chia seeds make best friends in this energy-boosting snack. Rich in fiber, the sweet and crunchy combo -- tied together with a spoonful of honey -- will help you feel fuller longer.
From vitamin C to vitamin K, blackberries contain a boatload of good-for-you nutrients that keep your brain alert and your nervous system healthy. Pair them with crumbly feta, pink pickled onions, and a drizzling of olive oil for a knock-your-socks-off salad.
Summer's favorite berry makes an undeniably sweet appearance in this protein-packed Greek frozen yogurt. Not only are strawberries brimming with antioxidants, but they also contain manganese, which helps boost your energy and wake you up.
When it comes to high-energy foods, "select foods in their whole and natural form," recommends Jennifer McDaniel, RDN, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. This Italian-inspired caprese salad features a bowlful of fresh farmer's market finds, including cherry tomatoes, chopped cucumber, and more.
Fork-tender salmon is a great source of omega-3 oils, which help boost brain function and encourage a healthy heart. Pair it with energy-boosting walnuts, fresh orange slices, and a sweet potato salad.
Beat the afternoon slump with a savory handful of crisp roasted chickpeas. The iron-filled bean not only boosts energy but metabolism, too! We bake ours in a mix of garlic, chili powder, and smoky barbecue spice.
Halibut is a healthy, nutrient-rich fish that eases stress, balances mood, and raises energy. We slather each fillet with fresh lemon juice and a bit of Worcestershire, then toss them on the grill for a meal with fewer than 200 calories.
There's something invigorating about citrus, but pair it with fragrant rosemary and it's instantly energizing. Both filled with B vitamins, the tuna-topping duo helps boost immunity and metabolism.