How Your Diet Affects Your Work Productivity

DietThe foods you eat could affect your productivity at work, so it is important to pay attention to your diet for many reasons. Start the day off with a great breakfast of grains and fruits.??

Foods to Avoid??

“One of the things you’re going to want to do is regulate energy levels throughout the day and avoid foods that cause spikes and crashes,? explains fitness expert Stratten Waldt, founder of women’s nutrition site Bia Women.??

“Simple carbs such as white breads, potato chips and sugar including sugar substitutes such as high fructose corn syrup, soda, etc., and any foods that contain these are foods to avoid. These spike your blood sugar and end up draining energy,” adds nutrition expert Dr. Carolyn Dean, author of “The Complete Natural Guide to Women?s Health.”??

Watch what you eat at lunch; it could affect the rest of your day.??

If you’re over-consuming at lunch, your glucose and insulin levels will fluctuate wildly throughout the day, which can cause the lethargy you’re experiencing,” notes Waldt.??

Skip the caffeine. “While caffeine can help boost productivity in the short-term, it can also be associated with high sugar such as in energy drinks or in black coffee with heapings of sugar added to it,” Alexander J. Rinehart, Certified Nutrition Specialist, points out. “Caffeine steals from future energy by dipping into your energy reserves. You get the benefit of an epinephrine release and more, but you are left in an energy deficit for the next day. Caffeine can also disrupt sleep for many people.”??

But if you can’t skip the coffee, consume it smartly. “Caffeine must be used carefully. It can be useful in the short-term as long as it is?followed up with ample recovery time,” says Rinehart. “You want to take it well before noon, so most of it can be metabolized by bedtime. It can be difficult to balance out your stress and energy hormones when you?re dependent on caffeine.”??

To start weaning yourself off of caffeine, try drinking green tea instead of decaf.??

“Decaf coffee can still contain up to 60 percent of the original caffeine content–which can still be too much for? you,” says Rinehart. “Green tea has caffeine, but in lower amounts, it also contains L-theanine, which is calming. While you are unlikely to see significant health benefits from drinking a cup of green tea every once in awhile, but a daily habit of 1-3 cups of a green tea per day over a period of months and years can have a number of benefits for your health. While the taste of coffee is something hard to give up, give tea a week and you will see that it also can be enjoyable–especially if you use high quality loose leaf tea.”??

What To Eat??

Certain foods will help keep your energy flowing and your brain sharp. “Try a bag of mixed nuts with a few raisins for variety or healthy nut bars,” says Dr. Dean. “Magnesium as one of the key electrolytes is an excellent example of an energy nutrient, since it activates enzymes that control digestion, absorption, and the utilization of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. Because magnesium is involved with hundreds of enzymatic reactions throughout the body, deficiency can affect every aspect of life and cause a score of unhealthy symptoms including fatigue at work.”??

One tip is to start snacking, believe it or not. “Consume smaller amounts throughout the day. Snacking (on healthy snacks) will help your body manage its energy levels and prevent crashes,” says Waldt.