Contrary to pop culture, it’s food and not love that binds the human race together. In sickness and in health, in sadness and in grief and in celebration and joy one common factor is FOOD. It’s that legal drug that can add a high when you’re low or elevate an existing high. With ever increasing work hours it’s essential to have a stimulating array of snacks to choose from. But ever wondered why you’re finding yourself to be increasingly crabby, snarky and ever ready to bite your colleagues’/partner’s head off?
Snacking throughout the day not only boosts your metabolism but it also prevents a dip in your blood sugar levels, which in turn is the most common cause of mood irritability. But before you reach out for that famous ‘Have a Break’ chocolate bar, STOP! Your choice of snacks not only correlates to your waistline but also to your mood.
When one is feeling lower than a snake’s belly it’s but natural for your thoughts to something sugary, creamy and gooey. Before you know it you’ve shoved a fistful of gummy bears into your mouth, chowed down 10 cream biscuits and washed it down with the contents of a fruit juice box. And you feel GREAT! You return to your work and 60 minutes later find yourself sluggish and wanting more. But you’re feeling guilty so this time you make your way to the office fridge and bring out a tub of frozen fruit yoghurt. It’ll go nicely with that granola bar you bought earlier. Fast-forward an hour and the cravings are back!
Unwittingly you’ve just consumed over 200g of sugar (equivalent to 50 teaspoons or 800 calories worth) – 10x more than your daily-recommended intake! Rest assured the ‘sugar high’ you craved is short-lived as the pancreas and liver rapidly remove the sugar leaving you irritable and brain-fogged; ‘psychoglycemia’ as I term it. And don’t be fooled by packaged food items that bear the phrase “no added sugar” and/or “all natural sugar”.
Here are some sweet swaps :
Swap to a decaf alternative or black coffee; limit your intake to 2 cups a day max! Better still sip on Green Tea , which apart from being a stimulant also boosts your metabolic rate. If you’re a hot-chocolate consumer then you too have a healthier option; mix some Carob powder in skimmed or almond milk with a sprinkle of cinnamon for a low-cal, high protein and metabolism boosting snack.
To make fluid consumption interesting, fill a tall glass with water and throw in an effervescent multivitamin pill OR try flavoring your water with slices of strawberries, lemons, cucumbers, peaches and pears. Also try sipping on herbal flavored teas . Aim to consume 3 litres of water daily!
Practice mindfulness . Try to imbibe positivity into your surroundings and into your thinking. Be it decorating your cubby hole with things that uplift your mood or by relieving stress and tension through a quick workout in your office. Find what cleanses the aura within and around and that in turn will better your dietary choices.
Juggling many roles from physician to writer to pilates instructor to Marketing-PR executive, Dr. Daamini is constantly pushed and inspired to get creative on how to encompass a Retreat into her daily life.