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Mood-Boosting and Productivity-Inducing Foods

Thursday, 6 August 2020  |  Editor

Mood-Boosting and Productivity-Inducing Foods

In the United Kingdom, the Office for National Statistics reports that nearly half of the British workforce has worked from home during the pandemic. Despite people slowly beginning to return to their offices again, it can be agreed that teleworking has made the public realise that this is a feasible option to turn to if needed.

Remote work has a number of benefits, but many people remain concerned about staying healthy and productive as they draw the boundaries between their work and home life. One of the points raised in this post on ‘30 Tips for Professionals Working from Home During the COVID-19 Pandemic’ is the need to enjoy your meals. You can easily get carried away with work and forget to eat, so it’s advised to take some time to step away to have a proper meal – and not just takeaway. Consuming the right foods is obviously very good for your health, but it can also help you reach optimal productivity levels.

If you find it difficult to carve out extra time to cook meals during the workday, you can dedicate a day to meal prep during the weekends, or simply ensure that you have these staples on hand at all times. To get you started, here are some mood-boosting and productivity-inducing foods to include on your grocery list for your next run to the supermarket.

Salmon

We touted the benefits of Omega-3 and 6 fatty acids on ‘Mental health during the Coronavirus epidemic’ as necessary for great mental performance and sharpened memory. Salmon is perhaps the most versatile fatty fish and it’s easy to cook – not to mention delicious any way you cook it. It also cooks in 5-8 minutes, ideal if you need a quick meal on the fly, but you can also portion out your fillets at the start of the week. If you do choose to prepare it ahead of time, you just need to marinate it with a simple spice rub and pan roast it until it’s slightly browned so that it doesn’t get overcooked when you reheat it later on.

Whole Grains

Whole grains have not been stripped of their natural vitamins and minerals, like magnesium, which can help relieve stress and make you more productive. This healthy source of plant-based protein can help tide you over for longer periods of time, and registered dietitian Keri Glassman says that these are carbs that are good for you. Whether you choose brown rice or options such as quinoa, sorghum, teff, millet, or any other whole grain, you can prepare a big batch at the start of the week to use for grain bowls or grain salads which are quick and flexible meals that are sure to pack a punch.

Avocados

The great thing about avocados is that they work well with either savoury or sweet treatment. You can throw avocados into your morning smoothie, mash and slather them on toast, or bake avocado ‘boats’ with toppings like egg, herbs, and meat for a powerful breakfast. Registered nutritionist Jo Lewin says that avocados contain monosaturated fat which promotes heart health. This also lowers blood pressure, helps regulate appetite, and is a source of carotenes for healthy eyes – necessary if you have become accustomed to staring at a screen all day.

Nuts

For the snackers out there, nuts should be your go-to food to munch on. You could have a handful of nuts if you are tempted to grab a bag of chips instead. Nuts contain healthy fats and protein, and an article by HuffPost suggests roasting your own nuts and sprinkling your own spice seasoning for a more delicious, highly customisable snack. You can do this during your meal prep, and experiment with different flavours every week.

In choosing the right foods, you do not just feed yourself physically, but mentally and emotionally as well. Here’s to healthy and happy eating.

Specially written for HEALTH4YOUONLINE.com

By: Rania Jannah