We share a list of ten foods which are known to help revitalise and provide a natural energy refresh to help keep us going until the summer sun shines. This post was sponsored by E.ON, to help advertise their wide range of products and services available for your home. Although I was paid for this post, all views are my own.
Why do we need an energy refresh?
It’s officially Spring! This conjures up images of lambs frolicking through the fields, daffodils and tulips brightening our gardens and longer, brighter, warmer days.
The reality though, is that it feels like for every beautiful Spring day there are three times as many rainy, gale-filled days! As I type this, hail is lashing at the window in torrential waves. I do not want to go outside.
I’m not alone with this. In a recent survey, E.on found bad weather causes more than three quarters (77%) of Brits to put off outdoor activities and errands. Furthermore, nearly a fifth (19%) say that miserable weather causes them to eat less healthily. Also, after the New Year, more than half of the nation (55%) say they want to incorporate exercise into their home routine.
With that in mind, I’m sharing ten foods which are known to help revitalise and provide natural energy to help keep us going until the summer sun shines. *fingers crossed*
10 foods to give yourself an energy refresh this Spring
- Oily Fish
- Leafy Green Vegetables
- Coffee (or Green Tea)
- Dark Chocolate
- Sweet Potatoes
These fruits are a natural source of potassium, carbohydrates and vitamin B6. I like to whizz mine up in a post-workout protein shake, adding some vibrant red Spring strawberries for extra nutrition and flavour. I also regularly make batches of my Classic Banana Bread Recipe with any bananas that have gone too brown in the fruit bowl.
Salmon, herring and mackerel are all sources of protein, omega 3 and B vitamins. Omega 3 essential fatty acids are known to help reduce body inflammation, while B vitamins help our blood cells utilise iron better, increasing energy. I like my salmon grilled with creamy polenta, or smoked with some scrambled eggs. Alternatively, mackerel pate on oatcakes with a side salad makes for a perfect, quick, nutritious lunch.
Leafy Green Vegetables
Spinach and kale are vegetable sources of iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium and vitamins A, C, E and K. They are also packed with folic acid, fibre and antioxidants that provide a whole host of health benefits. Iron, especially, is essential in blood formation and oxygen distribution around the body. Kale and Almond Pesto is a great way to eat loads of kale in one sitting while Saag Aloo – Indian Spinach & Potato Curry is a super tasty way to eat a generous serving of spinach.
Coffee (or Green Tea)
Caffeine is a well-known stimulant, and in moderate doses has been shown to have positive health benefits on the body. Me, I couldn’t contemplate starting my day without a cup of coffee. Green Tea contains an amino acid called L-theanine which can moderate the anxiety and jittery effects of caffeine that some people experience. If you’ve made too much coffee, you could always use some in a batch of Chocolate Coffee Cupcakes with Coffee Swirl Frosting.
As a source of complex carbohydrates, this Scottish breakfast essential is one of the best ways to start your day. Oats also contain B vitamins, iron and manganese, which help with energy production in the body. Opt for a traditional porridge to kick start your day, or how about making some Sunday morning oatmeal pancakes with yoghurt-maple syrup?
Packed full of energy-inducing vitamin C, these tropical fruits also contain other antioxidant nutrients that help combat oxidative stress (a factor involved in fatigue). Start your day with a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice, or you could even incorporate this fruit into a savoury slow cooker meal, like my Easy Slow Cooker Cuban Chicken recipe.
Chocolate as health food? Absolutely! Dark chocolate (not milk or white, I’m afraid) contains plenty of antioxidants, as well as caffeine and theobromine which have mood and energy enhancing effects. I like to use dark chocolate in my Dark Chocolate Chunk Banana Courgette Bread recipe.
High in protein and low in calories, eggs can give you a sustained source of energy without spiking your blood sugar levels. They’re perfect for a post-workout breakfast. I like mine scrambled and served with Prosciutto for a quick meal.
Our bodies are made up of around 60% water, and our heart and brain contain on average around 73%. If we’re not drinking enough water, it’s like not having enough fuel in the tank and we slow down. Experts recommend we drink at least 6-8 glasses a day, and the NHS says water, lower fat milk and sugar-free drinks, including tea and coffee, all count.
These orange-coloured tubers contain a useful quantity of beta-carotene and are lower in carbohydrates than standard white potatoes. I like roasting mine with fresh beetroot and chicken thighs for a quick, one pan midweek meal (with loads of whole garlic cloves). Alternatively, I’ve got a Quick & Easy Sweet Potato & Chilli Soup recipe that tastes rather delicious.
Other tips to give yourself an energy refresh
To help give the nation a boost, E.on has partnered with fitness expert, Alice Liveing to create a series of tips to give you and your home an energy refresh this Spring.
Her tips include:
- cosy up your home with duvets and making sure your home is warm and toasty
- do some energising stretches
- eat something wholesome
- do a wet weather workout at home
Me, I like to give myself a refresh with a cardio home workout, or a walk along the clifftops near my home. Food wise, I try and eat as many fruits and vegetables as I can, which is aided by a weekly delivery of a locally grown vegetable box. Green leafy vegetables are appearing in nearly every meal these days, even breakfast!
What would you add to this list? Let us know your tips and tricks you use to keep refreshed in the comments below, and you could win a £150 Abel & Cole gift voucher!
£150 Abel & Cole Gift Voucher Giveaway
E.on has very kindly offered a £150 Abel & Cole Gift Voucher worth £150 as a giveaway prize to one of my lucky UK readers! To enter, simply fill out the Rafflecopter form below. To unlock the entries, let us know your tips and tricks for an energy refresh in the comments below! Please make sure your comment is at least two sentences long and a minimum of 15 words. Comments not following this rule will not be approved and subsequent entries will be disqualified.
Terms & Conditions
This giveaway is open to UK entries only. Entrants must be age 18 or over. The winners will need to respond within 28 days of being contacted; failure to do this may result in another winner being selected.
The prize is offered and provided by E.on. The prize is to win an Abel & Cole Gift Voucher worth £150. There is no cash alternative and the prize is not transferable.
There is no entry fee and no purchase is necessary to enter this giveaway. The promoter (Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary) reserves the right to cancel or amend the giveaway and these terms and conditions without notice.
Entry into our giveaways will be deemed as acceptance of these terms and conditions.
If you need some help using Rafflecopter, here’s a quick clip to show you how. Rafflecopter will pick the winner at random from all the entries received.
Closing date is midnight (that’s 00:00 hours, 12 am on Thursday night/Friday morning) on Friday 29 March 2019 (GMT) and the winner will be announced shortly afterwards.
****Please make sure your comment is at least two sentences long and a minimum of 15 words. Comments not following this rule will not be approved and subsequent entries will be disqualified.****
This post was sponsored by E.ON, to help advertise their wide range of products and services available for your home. Although I was paid for this post, all views are my own. Photographs are all sourced from Unsplash.