What food gives instant energy?

Everything can feel non-stop, and we want to address a common sentiment many people experience: fatigue. We recall a conversation with a patient who, after her child turned two, found herself crying for an hour due to the relentless exhaustion she felt. It was as if she had hit a proverbial wall, and she wondered when this fatigue would dissipate.

Energy has become the new Holy Grail of our time, and we often turn to gimmicks for quick fixes. The sobering reality is that there are no magical formulas to instantly banish fatigue; however, the good news is that you can indeed boost your energy levels and reduce stress, and it all begins with what you put on your plate. In a way, there is a sort of magic formula for reinvigorating yourself through nutrition.

Here are seven practical nutrition tips tailored for busy humans. Incorporate these easy-to-follow suggestions into your routine to revitalize your energy levels:

  1. Choose Whole Grains: Opt for whole-grain options over refined white bread. Consider nutty, grainy bread, or indulge in avocado topped with cheese, olive oil, and ground pepper. If you’re a fan of cereal, try bran or steel-cut oats for a wholesome start.
  2. Incorporate Protein: Whether it’s cheese, yogurt, or eggs, including protein in your snacks, breakfast — all meals, really — helps maintain your energy levels and keeps you feeling full throughout the day.
  3. Try a Smoothie: Prepare individual-sized smoothie portions by freezing your favorite fruits. Blend them with yogurt and add some wheat germ or chia seeds for a delicious and nutritious breakfast option.
  4. Practice Mindful Eating: Set aside time to enjoy your meals without distractions. Avoid eating on the go or multitasking during mealtimes. By sitting down, savoring your food, and being fully present, you set a valuable example for your children about the importance of mindful eating.
  5. Stay Hydrated: Keep water within easy reach throughout the day. Add a refreshing twist with sliced lemons or strawberries. Dehydration can lead to fatigue, affecting various bodily functions. Water plays a crucial role in maintaining overall health.
  6. Choose Smart Snacks: Opt for energy-boosting snacks over potato chips and quick fixes. Consider options like peanuts and dried fruit, or prepare sliced fruits and veggies paired with yogurt, peanut butter, or hummus. When time is short, look for pre-made hummus or avocado at the grocery store, but prioritize natural ingredients.
  7. Don’t Eliminate Carbs: While low-carb diets may be trendy, remember that carbohydrates are a crucial energy source. Opt for whole-grain and whole-wheat options like oatmeal, brown rice, and wheat pasta. Create a satisfying pasta salad with olives, olive oil, fresh veggies, and cheese.
  8. Eat Regularly: Fuel your body every three to four hours to maintain consistent energy levels. Avoid prolonged gaps between meals, as this can lead to overeating later, leaving you feeling even more fatigued. Set alarms if needed and keep fresh fruit and diced cheese on hand.
  9. Indulge in Moderation: You don’t have to eliminate sweets entirely from your diet. Enjoy treats like a scoop of ice cream with fresh berries, a chocolate chip cookie with a glass of milk, or dark chocolate paired with nuts. Savor the flavors that bring you joy, but be mindful of moderation, as excessive sugar consumption can have the opposite effect and leave you feeling sluggish.



Nutrient-Packed Homemade Energy Bars


  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup nuts (e.g., almonds, cashews, or walnuts), chopped
  • 1/4 cup dried fruits (e.g., raisins, apricots, or dates), chopped
  • 1/4 cup seeds (e.g., chia seeds, flax seeds, or sunflower seeds)
  • 1/4 cup honey or maple syrup (for sweetness and binding)
  • 1/4 cup nut butter (e.g., almond butter, peanut butter, or sunflower seed butter)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (optional, for flavor)


Optional Add-Ins:

  • 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips, coconut flakes, or protein powder for added flavor and nutrients



  1. Prepare a Pan: Line an 8×8-inch (20×20 cm) baking pan with parchment paper, leaving some overhang on the sides for easy removal.
  2. Toast the Oats and Nuts (Optional): You can enhance the flavor by toasting the oats and nuts. Place the oats and chopped nuts on a baking sheet and toast them in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) for about 5-7 minutes or until they become lightly golden. Keep an eye on them to prevent burning.
  3. Mix Dry Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, combine the toasted oats, chopped nuts, dried fruits, seeds, and any optional add-ins you prefer. Stir well to distribute the ingredients evenly.
  4. Warm the Wet Ingredients: In a small saucepan over low heat, warm the honey or maple syrup, nut butter, vanilla extract, and salt (if using). Stir continuously until the mixture becomes smooth and well combined. This should only take a few minutes.
  5. Combine Wet and Dry Ingredients: Pour the warm honey or maple syrup mixture over the dry ingredients in the large mixing bowl. Use a spatula to thoroughly combine everything until it forms a sticky, cohesive mixture.
  6. Press into Pan: Transfer the mixture into the prepared baking pan. Use a piece of parchment paper or a spatula to press it down firmly and evenly into the pan. Make sure it’s well compacted.
  7. Chill: Place the pan in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or until the mixture has set.
  8. Cut into Bars: Once the mixture is firm, remove it from the pan using the parchment paper overhangs. Place it on a cutting board and slice it into bars or squares of your preferred size.
  9. Store: Store the homemade energy bars in an airtight container or wrap them individually in parchment paper. Keep them in the refrigerator for longer shelf life, or you can freeze them if you want to enjoy them over an extended period.


These homemade energy bars are versatile, so feel free to customize them with your favorite nuts, fruits, and seeds to suit your taste preferences and dietary needs. They make for a perfect snack on the go or a quick energy boost before workouts or busy days. Enjoy!