Whether you’re at home or at work, looking after your body is an essential step towards being an energetic, happy, and confident mom. This has taken me a while to realize, but it is key for my overall happiness and wellbeing.
Always start with breakfast
A good breakfast sets you up for the day; it provides the energy you need to get through a busy morning, it improves concentration and cognitive skills and of course, it stops you feeling hungry mid-morning.
A well balanced breakfast should include foods from each of the 4 main food groups:
- Aim for a combination of wholegrains to provide starchy carbohydrate for energy
- Fruit to provide valuable vitamins and minerals
- Low fat milk or yogurt for calcium
- Eggs to provide protein
Aim for at least 5 a day
It may sound like a cliché but eating more fruit and vegetables really can improve your sense of wellbeing.
Fruit and vegetables help us to stay healthy because they contain so many vitamins and minerals needed by different functions in the body, particularly the immune system. They’re an excellent source of dietary fibre, which helps maintain a healthy gut and prevent constipation and other digestion problems which can cause sluggishness and fatigue.
Include some oily fish
A healthy diet should include at least two portions of fish a week, including one of oily fish. That’s because fish and shellfish are good sources of many vitamins and minerals such as iodine and vitamin D which we don’t find in too many other foods. Oily fish – such as salmon, mackerel, trout, sardines and fresh tuna – is particularly rich in long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, which help to keep your heart healthy and boost immunity.
Keep well hydrated
Even mild dehydration (before you even feel thirsty) can make you feel tired and irritable (even without the loss of sleep), so drink little and often throughout the day to top up your fluid levels and maintain good hydration.
When you’re concentrating hard at work or busy with the kids at home, the brain’s energy needs are high and a fall in blood sugar levels can impact on your performance.
Try the following:
- Chopped fresh fruit such as melon or berries
- Vegetables sticks
- A handful of dried fruit and mixed nuts or seeds
- Wholegrain crackers with low fat soft cheese
- Rice cakes topped with peanut butter
- Low fat yogurts or yogurt drinks
- A small amount of nuts
Avoiding kids’ leftovers
Avoiding your children’s leftovers can be a big problem. Why do we do this? Because it’s there? Because we still feel guilty about the starving children our own parents told us about? Because hours-old pizza crusts and handfuls of semi-stale Cheerios just taste really, really good?
I came across this very informational article that sums up a lot of what moms are doing. I was guilty of it, but now I understand the importance of eating my own food and not just picking off of their plates.
Cheers to eating healthier!