There are many reasons why people overeat, and they can range from as simple as boredom to as complex as depression. However, what many of us fail to take into consideration is that our energy levels could be a contributing factor in overeating, and ultimately in weight gain.
Our bodies' natural instinct in regard to low energy is to fuel themselves with food, whether food is what it needs or not. Combating that first thing in the morning is a vital step to all-day success. So lets take a look at a few ways that we can help our bodies be more energized.
Don't Skip Out on Breakfast
Your mother had it right when she told you that breakfast was the most important meal of the day. This is the meal that establishes the tone of the day for your body. If you skimp on breakfast, or skip it altogether, not only will you be more likely to snack all day long, but you will also feel the lack of energy without having the proper fuel to get you through the morning.
Protein foods are a fantastic option in the morning; not only do proteins trigger your mind to think your stomach is full, but they also provide key elements for critical thinking. For a healthy dose of morning protein, grab a cup of Greek yogurt or a hard-boiled egg.
Throw in a little something crunchy, as well! Crunchy and hard foods require your jaw to work harder to chew, which stimulates your facial muscles, kick-starting that energetic vibe. If you choose a food such as an apple, not only will your muscle workout get you going—so will the natural sugars from your fruit.
Grab a Piece of Chocolate
Yep—chocolate. Chocolate contains caffeine and gets your endorphins pumping, ensuring that a small piece in the middle of the morning will not only up your energy levels (without a hard crash later in the day), but it will also improve your mood. Chocolate also contains healthy antioxidants, and studies show that it can reduce the risk of heart disease. The healthiest option is to munch on a small portion—the darker the better!
Have a Cup of Joe—or Two
Though many tend to shy away from this morning miracle brew, numerous medical studies have shown that coffee not only stimulates those endorphins (just like chocolate!), making us happier and of course peppier, it also reduces the risk of several types of cancer, stroke and neurological diseases. Drink your coffee black or with a small amount of skim milk (or another low-fat milk alternative such as soy or almond milk) to reduce that calorie count. Try to avoid adding sugar, and use caution when ordering coffee drinks at the local coffee shop on the way to work. Order your drinks with skim (or soy or almond) milk, and skip the syrup or order sugar-free. Those drink calories add up quickly!
Get Up and At 'Em
Studies have shown that those who rise early and go to bed early tend to snack less. They also reflect that good and consistent sleeping habits give way to more energy, productivity and higher levels of brain power.
Make Your Move
Beginning your day with a workout will get your blood flowing, raise your alertness and release prolonged energy throughout the day. Even if you don't have time to hit the gym before work, a simple act of making your bed gets your arms moving and coordination functioning.
All kinds of energy can be found in taking care of your body. Get plenty of rest, water and nutritious food to ensure a happy, health and energetic day.