A whole food diet containing nutritious foods can give us exactly the nutrients our body needs for optimum energy. Fortunately, many of the foods we already eat and enjoy on a daily basis are great sources of energy. However, if you are not receiving enough nutrients from the food you eat, you may consider taking energy-boosting mineral and vitamin supplements.
Energy-boosting food options
Ensuring that you are consuming food for energy and your diet is well-rounded means that you consume foods daily that contain a wide variety of vitamins and minerals essential to maintaining energy levels. Here are some energy booster foods to consider as part of your diet.
Seafood like shellfish, tuna, and mackerel are excellent foods for energy.
These foods are important in giving our body energy because they all contain iron, an essential mineral that supports energy production and maintenance by playing a key role in ATP (adenosine 5'-triphosphate) synthesis. ATP is the primary mode of energy storage in our cells. In addition to this, iron also contributes to the citric acid cycle, which is crucial for energy metabolism (1).
*Iron should only be taken if prescribed by your doctor.
Snacking doesn't have to be unhealthy! If you’d like to increase the amount of energy your body gets on a daily basis, you can opt for these energy-boosting complex carbs snack alternatives.
Make space in your kitchen for cashews, almonds, pumpkin seeds, and soy-based treats; you can have them together in a healthy snack bowl or separately. Oats and avocados also contribute to maintaining and supporting energy (12).
These foods have been linked to boosting energy because of what they’re able to give your body—magnesium. Magnesium supports energy production by playing a role in the synthesis of ATP. It is also responsible for breaking down glucose and contributes to energy-producing cycles within the body (5). Magnesium is also necessary in breaking down and converting what we eat into energy. Since the body doesn’t produce magnesium naturally, the best way to consume it is by eating healthy nutritious meals (6).
Energy drinks are intended to boost your energy, alertness and concentration. The amounts of caffeine in energy drinks vary widely, and the actual caffeine content may not be identified easily. Some energy drinks are marketed as beverages and others as dietary supplements.
Dark leafy greens are essential to boost your energy levels because they provide some of the B vitamins collectively known as vitamin B-complex. B-complex helps convert food to energy. The entire range of B vitamins help in the production and storage of energy in various ways. To name a few, B vitamins help in breaking down our food into energy, function as enzymes in energy production, and are also responsible for energy storage and release (7).
Red meat, milk, and dairy
Red meat, especially when consumed in healthy amounts and as part of a well-rounded diet, has been touted as a prime source of energy for our bodies. The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommend 455g of cooked lean meat per week, half of which should be red meat (8). The same can be said about commonly consumed animal products like milk and eggs. They all contain acetyl L-carnitine that plays a pivotal role in energy.
Acetyl L-carnitine supports energy production as a cofactor in helping shuffle fatty acids into the mitochondria. From there, these acids are turned into energy through oxidation (9). The redder the meat you consume, the higher the carnitine content that can facilitate this process (15). If your lifestyle or health limitations don’t allow you to consume animal products, you can consider taking Vitable’s Acetyl L-Carnitine supplement to ensure you have sufficient energy.
Most citrus fruits make delicious snacks, desserts, or accompaniments to meals. Citrusy treats can enable us to get our daily dose of vitamin C, a vitamin that has a major contribution to keeping our energy levels high.
Vitamin C plays a role by bringing fatty acids to the mitochondria where they are then turned into energy (10).
Fortified cereal and nutritional yeasts
Fortified cereals and foods with high nutritional yeast value contain vitamin B12, yet another vitamin needed to boost and maintain energy (17). Fortified cereals and foods high in nutritional yeast are easily paired with milk, eggs, and meats, and together, all of them pack a punch in vitamin B12 content (14).
Vitamin B12 supports energy levels by playing a part in the citric acid cycle. This cycle is responsible for energy release when we eat food and ensures that food is converted into energy (11).
Eating properly is well and good, but sometimes our diets are not always enough to provide us with adequate energy. That’s where Vitable vitamins and its daily subscription vitamins come into play. With daily vitamin packs and personalised supplements, you can rest assured of meeting your nutritional needs by having these vitamins delivered right to your doorstep.
Find out more about other areas that the above supplements can help you with:
*Always read the label. Follow the directions for use. If symptoms persist, talk to your health professional. Vitamin and/or mineral supplements should not replace a balanced diet.
- Iron (2016), Accessed September 4, 2021 from https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/minerals/iron
- An Overview on Ashwagandha: A Rasayana (Rejuvenator) of Ayurveda (2011), Accessed Septmber 4, 2021 from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3252722/
- Adaptogenic activity of Withania somnifera: an experimental study using a rat model of chronic stress (2003), Accessed September 4, 2021 from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0091305703001102?via%3Dihub
- Efficacy and Safety of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) Root Extract in Insomnia and Anxiety: A Double-blind, Randomized, Placebo-controlled Study (2019), Accessed September 4, 2021 from https://www.cureus.com/articles/22928-efficacy-and-safety-of-ashwagandha-withania-somnifera-root-extract-in-insomnia-and-anxiety-a-double-blind-randomized-placebo-controlled-study
- Magnesium Basics (2012), Accessed September 4, 2021 from https://academic.oup.com/ckj/article/5/Suppl_1/i3/447534
- Magnesium (n.d.), Accessed September 4, 2021 from https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/minerals/magnesium
- Herbs and Natural Supplements, Volume 2 (2014), Accessed September 4, 2021 from https://www.elsevier.com/books/herbs-and-natural-supplements-volume-2/braun/978-0-7295-4172-5
- Eat for Health (n.d), Australian Dietary Guidelines, Accessed September 22, 2021 from https://www.eatforhealth.gov.au/sites/default/files/files/the_guidelines/n55_australian_dietary_guidelines.pdf
- Understanding Nutrition (2019), Accessed September 4, 2021 from https://au.cengage.com/c/understanding-nutrition-44-4th-edition-4e-whitney-whitney-rolfes-rolfes-crowe-walsh/9780170424431/
- Nutritional Supplements and Metabolic Syndrome (2009), Accessed September 4, 2021 from https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-012374240-7.50012-7
- Vitamin B12 (n.d.), Accessed September 4, 2021 from https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/vitamins/vitamin-B12
- Iron-rich foods (2021), Accessed September 5, 2021 from https://www.redcrossblood.org/donate-blood/blood-donation-process/before-during-after/iron-blood-donation/iron-rich-foods.html
- Foods high in magnesium (n. d.), Accessed September 5, 2021 from https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/foods-high-in-magnesium
- Vitamin B (2020), Accessed September 5, 2021 from https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/vitamin-b
- Carnitine (2021), Accessed September 5, 2021 from https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Carnitine-HealthProfessional/
- Vitamin C (2020), Accessed September 5, 2021 from 9 https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/vitamins-and-minerals/vitamin-c/
- Vitamin B12 (2021), Accessed September 10, 2021 from https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminB12-HealthProfessional/
- Are Energy Drinks Good or Bad for You? ( 2017). Accessed February 4, 2022. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/energy-drinks#TOC_TITLE_HDR_2
- Energy Drinks (2018).Accessed February 4, 2022 https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/energy-drinks