Back to school, back to school, to show my dad I am not a fool. I got my lunch packed up, and my boots tied tight. I hope I don’t get in a fight.
It is that time of the year again! The snooze button keeps getting hit, the bells are ringing and oh my goodness oh gosh, homework is being assigned again. The school year is about a month in, which means changes to the family schedule. Some parents might be waking up earlier than normal and kids aren’t in there bed sleeping in. I remember the challenges of staying awake at school once the school year started. The days I had morning practice were just miserable. In all honesty, you sort of had to learn how to nap in class but that is a whole other conversation (Sorry Mom and Dad, movie days were the best times to nap just saying). I remember one time I had gone to bed and completely passed out. Next thing I knew I woke up in a frenzy thinking I needed to go to practice (Wake Up time those days was 4:15 AM). I scurried out of bed, began to brush my teeth and got dressed. Something did not feel right. I grabbed my phone to check the time, it was 2 in the morning. All that precious time I could have spent in bed was wasted. The worst of all was going to practice and having to go straight over to school where I just knocked out. To add more fuel to the fire, I never drank coffee or any caffeine in that matter even when I was attending college (Okay, I rarely go and grab Boba Guys or Sharetea to cure my boba fix but that is on the weekends). Part of the problem was that I was not eating enough or the right food to keep me going through the day. Leave the goldfish, candy, and cookies at home, here are some healthy (and vegetarian) snacks that either you or your child can eat to get you going during those long days at school/work.
The Vegetarian Snacks
1) Nut Butter and Toast
It is all about the nut butter here! Any nut butter is not only delicious but filling as well. It is full of nutritional monosaturated fats. Wait, isn’t fat a bad thing? Don’t shy away from certain fats (don’t get too hasty now). Here is why: your body needs calories in order to create energy. In relation to other foods, fats provide 9 calories per every gram. The more long-lasting calories we ingest into our bodies, the more energy we have. Diabetics who used peanut butter (used in this study) as a primary fat source had less body fat percentage compared to other diabetics eating other fat sources. On top of that, monosaturated fats are plant-based and in good moderation is great for your health.
Don’t forget about the bread that the nut butter is also spread onto. Carbohydrates from the bread provide 4 calories per every gram. All in all, this is a huge boost of energy. On top of that, the bread is full of fiber and the peanut butter is filled with other macronutrients such as potassium, magnesium, vitamin E and antioxidants.
2) Hummus Dip
Hummus is made from chickpeas, which are full of starch. Unlike regular simple sugars found in foods such as candy and pasta, starch is a slow releasing carbohydrate. Due to its slow releasing property, one’s blood sugar will not spike so there is no crash. On top of all this, it is a great source of plant protein which makes this more readily available for individuals on a dietary restriction. It is easy to pack and ready to eat at school or work. Pair this up with some tasty vegetables like carrots and celery. With that whole package, you are also getting a package filled with fiber, folate, phosphorous and B Vitamins.
Another food item filled with monosaturated fats for long-lasting energy. In fact, 77% of the avocado’s calories are made up of fats. On top of that, a study has shown that avocados also improve lutein levels in the brain which aids in cognition. That being said, avocados are also chalk block full of other macronutrients such as fiber, antioxidants, and can help lower cholesterol. Throw the avocados on some whole wheat toast for even more carbs with some salt and pepper for taste.
Side Note* If you want a good laugh, google image “thug kitchen avocados.” It just about spells out the greatness of avocados. Unfortunately, due to some of the choice of words selected, it is best that it is not posted on to this blog post. Shoutout to Dr. Erin Cameron for the idea!:)
With so much packed into a granola pack, where is one to start? The nuts in granola are packed full of omega-3 fatty acids. The grains are filled with slow releasing carbohydrates that are easy to digest. Talk about a 2 in 1 deal! What there is more? Granola is full of manganese, which is an important mineral that boosts metabolism, kidney, and liver function. This allows your body to work efficiently and conserve energy. On top of all these benefits, granola helps reduce cholesterol levels, aids in skin care and regulate blood sugar.
I know what you are about to say: this isn’t a snack!!! But, drinking a gallon of water a day is so beneficial. In fact, it is one of the best lifestyle choices you can make today. Dehydration is a reason why you are feeling so sluggish ( I constantly preach this to my friends and family! It is an easy habit to pick up.). Your cells will thank you since they don’t have to work so hard. With more water, there is an increase in blood flow, allowing glycogen to be delivered to your tired muscles. Hey, you might be able to ditch the coffee (not that coffee is the worst thing ever). On top of all that, drinking water aided in weight loss, skin care, and digestion.
Staying awake is tough. There are late nights and a number of things we all have to do in our daily lives. For parents, it is waking up earlier than your children to get them out of bed, prepare breakfast, drive them to school, have a full day of work, run some errands, etc. Students have to get up early, eat as fast as possible, go through some long lectures, go home, do homework on top of extra-curricular activities. But, throwing in some nutritional supplements to make everyday life will not only keep you awake but, lead to a healthier lifestyle. You can be far more productive during your day and get even more out of it. If you are still struggling to stay awake and cannot get the hang of it, come schedule a personal training appointment. Our trainers are not just knowledgeable in getting people fit but in areas like nutrition and lifestyle which could be affecting your ability to stay awake during the day. Sign yourself up for a FREE screening appointment where we discuss your personal daily habits (diet, sleep, stress, etc.) so we can come up with a plan to help you reach your personal fitness goals. The time is now!
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