Athletes and desk jockeys are susceptible to the same daily threat: the 3 p.m. slump—that dreaded time when your energy plummets, crushing your productivity and sapping your motivation for an afternoon workout.
Coffee and other caffeinated products are commonly used as quick fixes, but there might be a better way.
More: Foods That Boost Energy
Honey: The Natural Alternative
Dulan recommends using honey, which is a great source of carbohydrates and a natural energy booster.
"Honey is composed of a unique carbohydrate composition of natural sugars and trace amounts of antioxidants, enzymes, minerals, vitamins and amino acids, making it a smart, natural energy-filled afternoon snack," Dulan says. "In fact, for years, sports dietitians have recommended that athletes include pure honey into their pre-exercise meal or snack for that very reason."
How to Use Honey to Boost Energy
So what's the best way to use honey when you need a fast fix? Dulan shares her tips for portable, on-the-go meals and snacks.
- Add a tablespoon of honey to 8 ounces of water for a budget-friendly energy drink.
- Mix honey with cream cheese or nut butter for an energy-boosting fruit and vegetable dip.
- Spread nut butter, honey and sliced bananas on a whole-wheat sandwich thin.
- If you have time to prepare food in advance, try this honey quinoa breakfast bake, honey peanut butter protein energy balls or honey-pecan salmon.
More Energy-Boosting Tips
Here are some additional nutrition strategies from Dulan to help you keep your energy up during the day.
- Choose high-fiber foods such as whole grains like wheat and quinoa and legumes like beans and lentils.
- A substantial breakfast can help set the tone for a high-energy day.
- Add a teaspoon of honey and a handful of nuts to plain, Greek-style yogurt for an energy-boosting, afternoon snack.
While it might be more time consuming to bring some of these snacks to the office, they'll provide a more substantial energy boost than an afternoon cup of coffee. Plus, these snacks can keep hunger at bay and satisfy your cravings for sweets.
Don't let the 3 p.m. slump wipe you out; plan in advance, pack snacks, and fight back.
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