The Five

Having a sharp mind helps to improve every aspect of your life. Memory, productivity, recall, and overall better mental performance will help you be a better parent, partner, and employee. On the other hand, feeling sluggish and mentally dull can wreak havoc on your wellbeing. 

If you want to get the most out of your mind, here are the best foods to boost memory and productivity:  

Fish

Fatty fish is packed with omega-3 fatty acids. 60% of your brain is made up of fats and half of those are of the omega-3 fatty variety. As such, eating a healthy amount of salmon, trout, and sardines can boost brain health and improve learning, memory, and productivity. 

Blueberries

Deep-colored berries, like blueberries, are filled with plant compounds with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Antioxidants may delay brain aging and improve memory, making blueberries a great addition to your diet if you want to boost memory and productivity, keeping you operating at peak mental function for longer. 

productivity

Broccoli 

Like berries, broccoli is flush with antioxidants. Add to that a healthy dose of vitamin K–more than 100% of your recommended daily servings in a single serving of the vegetable–and you’ve got a recipe to protect the brain against damage thanks to its anti-inflammatory effects. 

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of magnesium, iron, zinc, and copper. Each of these micronutrients are important for brain health and help improve brain function. 

Nuts 

Research has shown that eating nuts help improve heart function. Having a healthy heart goes a long way towards having a healthy brain. In fact, research has indicated that people who regularly eat nuts over the course of several years might have a sharper memory compared to those who don’t regularly eat nuts. Want to know the nut that packs the biggest punch? Walnuts. They are also filled with omega-3 fatty acids. 

Eggs

Eggs are a good source of several nutrients, including B6, B12, and choline. Choline is an important micronutrient that your brain uses to regulate mood and memory. Sadly, most people don’t get enough choline in their diet, but egg yolks are packed with it. Coupled with the B vitamins found in eggs, this makes for a delicious way to improve memory and productivity. 

Green Tea 

Green tea has been shown to improve alertness, performance, memory, and focus. Additionally, the amino acids found in green tea can reduce anxiety thereby further improving recall and attention. 

Looking for an easy way to get the nutrients you need to support healthy brain function? Fit Five Meals makes it fast, easy, and reliable by offering pre-made meals with all the nutrition that you need. 

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Getting children–especially toddlers–to eat healthy food can feel like pulling teeth. Even so, it’s a common plight for parents. According to recent studies, potatoes–primarily in french-fry form–are the most common vegetable eaten by toddlers. It makes sense; 42% of kids between 15 months and two years eat fast food each day. 

If you want to encourage your toddler to eat healthy foods, here are four ways to try: 

1. Have a plan. 

As with any conquest, it’s best to have a battle plan. Approaching mealtime with intention will go a long way towards getting your toddler to eat or try healthier foods. Try planning out two or three days of meals at a time, including a balanced diet for each day. Shoot to have a protein, whole-grain carbohydrate, and one fruit or vegetable on the plate at mealtime. 

And don’t skimp on the snacks. Children need to eat every three to four hours. This includes three meals, two snacks, and plenty of fluids. Having a plan will give you the freedom to include certain food groups at certain times during the day and introduce new items from time to time. 

2. Introduce new foods slowly. 

Speaking of introducing new food items, make sure that new things are introduced slowly. Toddlers are naturally averse to new foods. When you want to introduce your toddler to something new, start small. Take broccoli for instance. Include one floret at mealtime, call it by a cute nickname, and see what happens. If new foods don’t catch on, try offering condiments with vegetables. Introducing foods slowly allows your toddler time to adjust and get comfortable with certain items without being overwhelmed. 

toddler

3. Make mornings count. 

Breakfast has been called “the most important meal of the day.” When it comes to getting a jumpstart on daily nutrition for your toddler, it just might be true. Most families don’t get enough fiber on a daily basis, so work some in during the first meal of the day. High-fiber cereals are a great way to make sure that each day starts off on the right foot. You can also go the extra mile and cook up whole-grain pancakes or waffles. 

4. Model a healthy relationship with food. 

Like many other things, when it comes to nutrition we learn to imitate our parents. Whether you realize it or not, your toddler will learn to interact with and approach food in a similar manner as you. By modeling a healthy relationship with food you’ll encourage your toddler to do the same. 

If you struggle with eating healthy foods yourself, then Fit Five Meals can help! With fresh food that fits your life, Fit Five Meals will help you model a healthy relationship with food while ensuring you get all the nutrients to operate at your best. 

There are few topics as highly debated in nutrition as the role that carbohydrates should play in a balanced diet. Most dietary guidelines suggest that about half of our caloric intake should come from carbs. 

The fact is our bodies need carbohydrates to function well. Making sure that we choose the best carbs for our nutritional goals is important. 

What are carbs? 

Carbohydrates, in nutrition, are one of three foundational macronutrients. Protein and fats are the other two. Carbs can further be broken down into three categories: 

  • Sugars – sweet, short-chained carbs like glucose and sucrose. 
  • Starches – long chains of glucose molecules that are broken down in the body. 
  • Fiber – a vital part of healthy digestion. 

The primary role of carbs in our diet is to provide energy. Carbohydrates are broken down into glucose which the body uses for fuel and energy. 

best carbs

Which carbs are the best carbs? 

Not all carbs are good carbs. There’s a difference between “simple” and “complex” carbohydrates just like there are differences between “whole” and “refined” carbs. 

Whole food sources are packed with nutrients and fiber that your body needs. Eating these whole carbs will help provide the energy and fiber you need: 

  • Vegetables
  • Legumes
  • Potatoes
  • Barley
  • Whole Grains
  • Quinoa 

It’s best to avoid refined carbohydrates. Foods like these are associated with a host of negative health conditions including obesity and type 2 diabetes: 

  • White Bread
  • Pastries
  • Sugar-sweetened Beverages

Basically, it’s best to stay away from heavily refined foods and stick with nutrient-dense whole foods, including carbs. 

Want to make eating healthy and getting the right kind of carbs even easier? Try Fit Five Meals

Picky eating isn’t just for kids. 

In fact, many adults struggle to find foods that are both palatable and nutritious. When it comes to improving your diet or eating nutritious foods that would help promote weight loss, being a picky eater makes it tougher. 

But it’s still possible to get a balanced diet, moderate your calorie intake, and lose weight. If you’re a picky eater looking to drop a few pounds, here are some things that can help! 

Buddy Up

Just like going to the gym, eating healthy is often easier if you’ve got more than a little moral support. Having a friend who loves food and has a broad palette can help you try new foods or introduce you to new cuisines that might be more enjoyable as a picky eater. It’s even better if your foodie friend also loves to cook. Spend some time in the kitchen together getting to know different ingredients and how they can be prepared. Preparation can change the flavor of many foods–including those that you might have some aversion to. You may not like raw broccoli, but roasted florets–with those little crispy bits–have a completely different flavor profile. 

Refine Your Tastes

One of the biggest problems with the proliferation or prepacked, processed, and manufactured foods is the impact it has on our understanding of what food should taste like. Packed with preservatives and sugar, highly processed foods hijack our sense of taste. If you’re accustomed to eating a lot of sweet or sugary processed foods, it might take some time to train your taste buds and get them used to the natural sugars found in other foods. Try cutting out processed foods for a few weeks and then trying foods you once disliked again. Give yourself time to adjust to a new diet. Changing eating patterns isn’t easy. 

picky eater

Try Substitutions

We all have our go-to meals. When you’re a picky eater, having meals that are easy and enjoyable makes a world of difference. Chances are you have a few dishes that you prepare because you genuinely enjoy them. If you’re trying to lose weight, try swapping out a few ingredients that are dense in low-quality calories for something a bit healthier that will help you reach your weight loss goals. Experiment with whole-grain pasta, swapping out regular rice for cauliflower rice, or baking your potatoes instead of frying them. 

While losing weight isn’t easy, it can be easier. Fit Five Meals provides wholesome food that fuels your body and helps you reach your nutrition goals. Our high-quality meals are premade from fresh ingredients and make getting the nutrients you need simpler. We’ve even got meals to satisfy picky eaters! 

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We all know the feeling or sensation we experience when we get a good night’s rest and feel rejuvenated and ready to start the day by eating energy-boosting foods. It’s even better when we keep that same energy throughout the day and can approach our career, relationships, and goals with fervor and passion. 

What we often fail to see is that what we eat directly impacts the energy we have throughout the day. 

Instead of downing another cup of coffee or sipping on an energy drink, there are a number of healthy eating habits and nutritious foods that can boost our energy level and help us power through the day. 

Some foods provide a slow release of energy from healthy carbohydrates while avoiding the feelings of a temporary sugar rush. Others are packed with vitamins and minerals that make drawing sustainable energy from your foods easier. Even proteins help to provide energy by supplying spent muscles with the building blocks they need from energy-boosting foods. 

Maintain Balanced Blood Sugar Levels

One thing you want to avoid if you’re looking for energy is a drastic fluctuation in blood sugar levels. The energy from a well-balanced, nutritious meal can last for up to four hours, helping to ensure that you have the fuel you need to get through the day. On the other hand, foods high in sugar cause spikes in insulin and lead to the sensation we know as “sugar crash.” Eating well-balanced meals throughout the day and snacking on energy-boosting foods every 3-4 hours will help maintain balanced blood sugar levels. 

energy-boosting foods

Choose the Right Kinds of Foods

What you eat is as important as when you eat. Foods that are filled with the right type of carbohydrates will help sustain your energy levels. When combined with protein, carbohydrates that are low on the glycemic index will release energy slowly and leave you feeling full. These energy-boosting foods include oats, whole-wheat bread, sweet potatoes, and lentils. 

Avoid Too Much Caffeine 

It’s important to stay hydrated, but drinking too much caffeine will actually work against you. A dependency on the quick bursts of energy from caffeinated beverages is a poor substitute for a balanced diet that will provide energy to burn. A cup or two of coffee won’t hurt your overall nutrition, but be mindful of how much it impacts your energy levels. If you can’t get through the afternoon without another cup, your coffee might not be to blame. 

There’s no single, quick solution to energy-boosting foods. Instead, it’s important to focus on nutrition and a well-balanced diet. Eating right will make sure you have all the energy you need. Need help choosing meals that will power you throughout the day? Fit Five Meals has the answers.

Millions of people hit the gym each week. Everyone has their own reasons: weight loss, muscle mass, or general fitness. For those who are looking to add mass, strength training is really only part of the program. Just like when losing weight, what you put in your body–your nutrition and diet plan–makes a world of difference. 

If you’re looking to put on pounds of muscle, pay careful attention to what you eat. 

With so many options and so many empty promises for muscle-gain glory, knowing a few simple foods that will help you bulk up can go a long way. Here are 6 foods to help you gain muscle mass: 

1. Oatmeal 

Don’t skimp on breakfast. If you want to add muscle mass there are very few meals that will start your day off better than a hearty bowl of oatmeal. The carbohydrates in oatmeal will help fuel you throughout the day. At the same time, oatmeal is also minimally processed and has a low glycemic index value. That means oatmeal is packed with micronutrients, will keep you feeling fuller longer, and adds energy to your bank.  

2. Eggs 

If oatmeal isn’t your thing, double down on the eggs. Eggs are a great source of vitamin D and are full of the amino acids, protein, fat you need to power through your day. Easy to prepare in a host of different ways, eggs are simple to integrate into your diet. Their cheap, quick, and a great foundational item for your meal planning. 

muscle mass

3. Whey Protein 

Whey protein might not be a food per se, but it belongs on any list of muscle-building foods. Whey protein is a fast and convenient source of protein that’s available for an affordable price. Whey isn’t a substitute for protein-rich foods, but as a supplement between meals, it can elevate your nutrition and make your pursuit to gain muscle mass more effective. 

4. Fish

Fish, like tuna, are incredibly high in protein, rich in fat, and filled with Omega-3 fatty acids. Want to stay on top of your metabolism? A diet full of fish will help. Omega-3 helps regulate body function and complements every other aspect of your dietary plan. 

5. Lean Beef

Beef: it’s what’s for dinner–and lunch and, sometimes, breakfast. Lean beef has zinc, iron, B vitamins, protein, and amino acids–all things you need to beef up yourself. Lean beef is especially rich in the high-quality proteins you need to reach your muscle mass goals. It should be a staple of your diet. 

6. Whole Grains

There’s a reason grains have been a staple of the human diet for so long. They provide sustained energy and promote overall health. Grains are easy to come by and simple to incorporate into any meal plan. 

If you want to take the guesswork out of meal planning, Fit Five Meals makes it easy to select wholesome food to fuel your body. Want to gain muscle mass? Choose meals specifically designed to help you meet your fitness goals. 

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