Breakfast may be the most important meal of the day, but that does not mean that lunch shouldn’t also be taken seriously. Lunch is your first step at overcoming that inevitable mid-afternoon slump. Aside from providing you with your much needed energy boost, a wholesome lunch will also provide you with the essential nutrients and help to keep calories and weight under control.
Fibre: Not only does fibre curb hunger by keeping the stomach fuller longer, it also helps to prevent high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes
• High fibre fruits to include in your lunch: apples, bananas, berries and dried fruits
• Avocadoes are also high in fibre and contain healthy-heart fat; add into sandwiches, wraps, salads and toast
• Make sure any breads you use for lunch are high quality, whole grain
Potassium: In addition to energizing, consuming potassium-rich foods regularly maintains fluid balance, help improve bone health and encourage heart and muscle function.
• Include these potassium rich fruits: dried apricots, bananas, nectarines and oranges
• Add spinach into your salads, smoothies, wraps and sandwiches as it is high in potassium
Complex Carbohydrates: Refined carbohydrates (breads, crackers, cookies) yields sugar crashes, causing your blood sugar to spike and drop rapidly
• Reach for complex carbohydrates that stabilize your blood sugar
• Some complex carbohydrates to include are fruits, vegetables, whole grains, brown rice, hummus
Balanced Eating: A combination of complex carbohydrates, protein and some good fats is ideal for marinating energy after lunch
• For a sandwich, pile some avocado slices (healthy fat), tomatoes, spinach and bean sprouts (complex carbohydrates) and tuna or shredded chicken breast (protein) on whole grain bread
• Load up your salad with lots of veggies and beans for protein
Hydration: Hydration at lunch is crucial in helping the body to transport nutrients, eliminating waste and keeping you feeling energized.
• Always pair a tall glass of water with lunch
• Steer clear of high caloric and sugary drinks
• It’s okay to have a small cup of coffee or tea at lunch for a mid-afternoon perk-up, so long as it is not loaded with sugar and dairy products
Robbins, C. (2014, April 8). Lunch Foods That Will Give You Energy for the Afternoon. Retrieved from: http://www.livestrong.com/article/84852-foods-eat-lunch-give-energy/