Energy has become man's most precious commodoty, and we're not talking coal fuel; we're talking bodily vooma to get us through our demanding days. Hannah Lewry highlights our most precious resources.
We think its pretty neat that Mother Nature designed certain foods with energy releasing properties in mind! Who needs supplements when you can boil an egg or peel a banana? Here are TASTE's Assistant Food Editor, Hannah Lewery's favourite foods packed with natural energy.
These are a fuel powerhouse that provide instant energy and I love putting them in my smoothies .In fact, all fruits, fresh and dried, are a good source of natural fruit sugars, releasing a concentrated burst of energy.
That said, super athletes often avoid dried fruits and those high in fibre, such as pears, just before an endurance event or extended training session as they take longer to digest.
Try our organic peanut butter and banana smoothie
EGGS AND FISH
Eggs are perfect portion of protein, aiding in repairing muscles and keeping you full with out leaving you feeling heavy or sluggish. Just like eggs oily fish like salmon and mackerel are high in omega 3s which have nutritious brain boosting properties.
Here are some quick and easy ways with eggs
Try our brunch stir-fry with poached eggs
And here's a lovely quick and easy way to prepare salmon
Nuts like raw almonds and cashews are a great pick-me-up snack. Keep some in the car, your bag or in the desk drawer for a nutritious mid-morning or afternoon snack.
I often used crushed nuts, especially macadamias or cashews, as an alternative and healthy way to thicken soups, sauces and dips.
Read our article on magical macadamias and what to do with them
For a wholesome, good-energy meal try our stuffed vegetables with lentil, rice, pine nuts and parsley or add our red pepper and macadamia nut sauce to your grilled chicken or as a dip with fresh veggies.
Sweet potatoes are also part of the low Gi food group and are the perfect starch to keep up your stamina. Especially if you are not a huge fan of pastas and breads.
I love simply baking them in some apple juice until soft and sticky.
Here are some more easy ideas for using sweet potatoes.
Oats are such a pantry basic but hardly ever gets eaten enough. Rolled oats are ideal as they are closest to their natural state and release energy at a slower rate.
Try creamy oats with caramalised banana or my delicious pineapple and rolled oat smoothie
SPINACH AND LEAFY GREENS
Spinach and other dark leafy greens prevent anemia as they are full of iron and foliate. Anemia is one of the main causes of fatigue as well as stress.
Watercress is another green packed with essential minerals and that you should add to your dishes as often as you can. I tear then sprinkle them on my salads and grilled fish dishes whenever I can. The same goes for wild rocket.
Our in season sections offers loads of recipes using spinach and do try our green pea, spinach and cress soup which is literally health in a bowl.