11 Nutrient-Rich Foods for All Day Energy

Eating a balanced diet goes a long way toward making sure you have as much energy as possible. Protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats all give you energy to go about your day, but your body also needs nutrients such as B-vitamins, which help convert carbohydrates into usable energy, and manganese, a mineral required by the mitochondria, which are energy-producing organelles. Here are 11 foods that contain all of these nutrients and more.

1. Mushrooms

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Mushrooms are low-calorie, yet very nutritious. The mineral content of mushrooms is especially good. One cup of raw white mushroom slices has 15 calories, 2 grams of carbs, and 2 grams of protein. White mushrooms are a very good source of thiamin, riboflavin (a B-vitamin), vitamin b6, pantothenic acid, niacin, potassium, phosphorus, selenium, and copper.

White mushrooms are also a good source of fiber, vitamin C, iron, zinc, folate, and manganese. Plus, white mushrooms contain ergosterols, which are a type of antioxidant that is beneficial to your body.

Mushrooms are great sauteed in olive oil and served as a side dish, or slice them up raw to add to a salad.

2. Flaxseed

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Flaxseed was cultivated by the ancient Babylonians as far back as 3000 BC, and they’re a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. One tablespoon of flaxseed contains 55 calories, 2 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber, and 4 grams of fat. Flaxseed is a very good source of fiber, manganese, and thiamin (a B-vitamin). It’s also a good source for copper, magnesium, and phosphorus.

Try adding flaxseed to your baked goods or morning yogurt for more energy.

3. Oats

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Oats are a complex carbohydrate that make for a filling breakfast. One-third of a cup of oats (about the amount inside an individual oatmeal packet) contains 102 calories along with 2 grams of fat, 4 grams of protein and 19 grams of carbs. Oats are a very good source of manganese, and a good source of fiber, selenium, and phosphorus. Oatmeal also provides some iron and thiamin.

Research has linked including oats in your diet to having a 7% drop in bad cholesterol, on average. Try topping oatmeal with berries, nuts, or honey.

4. Spinach

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Spinach is a highly nutritious green vegetable, recommended by doctors to people with high blood pressure. One cup of raw spinach gives you 7 calories, 1 gram of fiber, 1 gram of protein, and loads of vitamins and minerals. Spinach is a very good source of vitamin A, vitamin E, thiamin, vitamin B6, calcium, magnesium, potassium, manganese, vitamin C, vitamin K, riboflavin, folate, iron, phosphorus, and copper. It also provides some niacin and zinc.

Add spinach to your diet in wraps, salads, and sandwiches for extra vitamins and minerals to aid in all of your body’s processes.

5. Clams

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Half a cup of clams has 84 calories with 15 grams of protein, 3 grams of carbs, and 2 grams of fat. These mollusks are rich in omega-3 fatty acids as well as several minerals. Clams are considered a very good source for protein, vitamin B12, phosphorus, manganese, vitamin C, iron, copper, and selenium.

A cup of clam chowder every now and then will boost your body’s mineral levels and leave you more energetic.

6. Quinoa

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This South American crop has become popular in recent years because its more nutritious than other non-wheat carbohydrate sources. The antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids found in quinoa are great for you. Half a cup of uncooked quinoa has 313 calories, 5 grams of fat, 6 grams of fiber, and 12 grams of protein. Quinoa is a very good source of manganese, as well as a good source of folate, phosphorus, and magnesium. Quinoa can be made into either a sweet or savory dish.

For breakfast, try adding honey, cinnamon, and a splash of milk. For lunch or dinner, try cooking with chopped kale or another vegetable, and seasoning with sea salt and olive oil.

7. Hazelnuts

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Hazelnuts are a very good source of manganese, an essential nutrient for energy. They’re also a good source of copper and vitamin E. A serving of 21 hazelnuts will provide 177 calories, 4 grams of protein, 17 grams of fat, and 3 grams of fiber. According to the FDA, eating 1.5 ounces of hazelnuts daily can help reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease.

To take advantage of the health benefits of hazelnuts, add chopped hazelnuts to your baked goods recipes, or eat a square of hazelnut chocolate.

8. Rye bread

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Whole-grain rye bread is a great alternative to less nutritious white bread. A small slice of rye bread contains 83 calories, 3 grams of protein, 1 gram of fat, and 2 grams of fiber. Rye bread is a good source of thiamin, manganese, selenium, and folate. This complex carbohydrate will give you lots of usable energy.

Use rye bread instead of white bread for your sandwiches and morning toast to get more nutrition and energy than you would otherwise.

9. Salmon

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Salmon is one of the healthiest protein sources out there. Three ounces of sockeye salmon has 143 calories, 18 grams of protein, and 7 grams of fat. Salmon is considered to be a very good source of protein, selenium, and vitamin B12, an important energy-boosting vitamin. The essential amino acids found in salmon help fuel your body.

A study done at the University of Washington found that eating salmon just once per week reduces your risk of heart attack.

10. Sunflower seeds

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Sunflower seeds are an ideal snack, full of good fats that will help to raise your good cholesterol while lowering your bad cholesterol. Sunflower seeds are a very good source of vitamin E, as well as a good source of pantothenic acid, copper, selenium, manganese, and phosphorus. An ounce of sunflower seeds provides 14 grams of fat, 3 grams of fiber, 5 grams of protein, and 143 calories.

Sunflower seeds can be eaten on their own for an energy-boosting snack, or added to baked goods or yogurt.

11. Avocado

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Avocados are a good source of fiber, vitamin C, folate, and vitamin K. They’re famous for having a large amount of monounsaturated fat, which is beneficial to your body. One whole avocado has 322 calories, 4 grams of protein, 13 grams of fiber, and 29 grams of fat.

Avocados are great in burritos and wraps, spread on toast, or added to sandwiches, and will give your body a huge energy boost that will last all day.