You might find it hard to believe, but downing that third cup of coffee isn’t the
healthiest—or even the most effective—way to keep up your energy throughout the day.
Registered dietitian and new mom Rebecca Scritchfield says she turns to these snacks
to keep her body fueled and healthy. The key, she says, is to remember: “Anything you eat
will provide calories, but not everything will provide vitamins and minerals.”
It takes the body a long
time to digest the protein, fiber, and healthy fats
in hummus’s two main
and olive oil—so the
energy it provides lasts, Scritchfield says. Use
vegetables such as
bell peppers or carrots
for scooping, and you
can consider their
nutrients a bonus.
This fruit provides as much energy as a sports drink
without all the sugar.
A 2012 study found that when cyclists consumed bananas during rides, they maintained the same amount of energy as when they downed energy drinks. Bananas contain 27 grams of carbohydrates and half the sugar found in a 20-ounce bottle of Gatorade.
3. Food Bars
Healthy bars make great on-the-go snacks that can be stored in your purse or glove compartment. But, Scritchfield warns, some are loaded with sugar, which can send you careening into a midday slump. Stick to bars that include short lists of ingredients such as seeds, nuts, and natural sugars from fruit.
4. Greek Yogurt
With its healthy dose of probiotics and good-for-you bacteria, a serving of any yogurt is a great way to keep your immune system in tip-top shape. Scritchfield suggests opting for Greek yogurt—it contains more protein, which provides long-lasting energy.
Nuts in general are great energy boosters, thanks to their high levels of protein and heart-healthy fats, Scritchfield says.
Pistachios are particularly good—with only about 100 calories in 30 kernels, you’re
not likely to overeat inadvertently while cheering on the kids at a soccer game.