Working extra long hours isn’t new for nurses. In fact, we’re so used to it that we’ve become highly dependent on energy drinks, coffee and commercial tea. Although they aren’t really that great for the health, the demands of our work often leave us with no other option.
In case you are looking for healthier ways to keeping your energy levels high, here are some of the best energy boosting recipes for nurses you should try. And added points? They’re delish!
1Smoothies: Kale Smoothie with Lavender and Mulberry
Smoothies aren’t just for people aspiring to shed some pounds; they are also a great help for nurses who want to keep their bodies healthy despite their toxic working schedules. A kale smoothie with lavender and mulberry is one the best energy boosting recipes for these nurses since it’s also nutrient-dense.
Kale is widely known as a super-food. It’s packed with nutrients and minerals to give your body the nutrients it needs to function effectively at work.
Apart from kale, this smoothie is also packed with bananas which are great sources of slow-burning carbohydrates and fiber. It also contains potassium that can help combat those nasty leg cramps. Mulberries, on the other hand, contains antioxidants, riboflavin and other essential nutrients.
Blend together the following ingredients:
- 1 cup fresh mulberries
- 1 cup of kale
- 1 banana (frozen)
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1 tablespoon lavender (dried)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup apple juice
- 1/2 cup raw cashew
Make sure you achieve a homogenous texture before taking the mixture out of the blender and serving. We’re smoothie addicts to make sure to give smoothies a go!
2Breakfast Toast: Peanut Butter Toast with Chia Seeds
If you are in such a hurry that preparing a decent breakfast seems impossible, opt for breakfast toast instead. The nice thing about this easy-to-prepare snack is that it gives you tons of choices.
Take, for example, its grain. Depending on the type of bread you use, a well-prepared breakfast toast can give your body some carbohydrates and fiber.
These things, however, may not be enough to sustain the energy you’ll need to last your shift or even half of it. You’ll need to add in extra ingredients to serve as energy fuel. This makes peanut butter toast with chia seeds a great breakfast for champion nurses.
- Toast your bread of choice and spread peanut butter on top.
- Sprinkle with chia seeds.
- Optional: Add slices of banana.
We have this a lot and it’s really yummy! If you have kids, they’ll love this too.
3Energy Balls: Coffee Ground Energy Bites
Coffee Ground Energy Bites can be small, but they can really give you that energy shot you’ll need to handle a very busy shift. Apart from that they are easy to prepare, they can also last long, especially when they are frozen. You can prepare a batch during your day off so that you’ll have enough to bring to work.
You can eat them for breakfast or anytime you need to wake your senses up. They are really tasty so make sure to eat them in moderation. Keep a close eye on the amount of sugar you use for the recipe and how many energy bites you eat in a single shift.
Mix the following ingredients in a bowl:
- 1 cup of dry whole grain oatmeal
- 1.5 tablespoon of coffee granules
- 1/2 cup almond butter
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/4 cup chocolate chips
• Stir well until everything is mixed.
• Place inside the refrigerator and let it chill for around 20 minutes.
• Roll the mixture into balls of your desired size.
• Store in an airtight container and leave it in the fridge.
You can put these little babies in a ziplock bag and stash them in your bag at work. Share with friends if you’re feeling generous.
4Overnight Oats: Banana Almond Overnight Oats
Oats have the ability to stabilize your blood sugar levels as it has a low glycemic load. It will keep your energy levels up the whole day. Unfortunately, not all oats are of the same quality. For your health and energy, it’s best if you stay away from instant oats as they are packed with salt and sugar.
If you’re the type of nurse who doesn’t always have the time to be creative with breakfast, you can prepare your oats the night before. Overnight oats don’t require a lot of time for preparation: just mix all the ingredients, keep the container in the fridge and grab it on your way to work.
For a single serving: mix the following ingredients:
- 1 banana (sliced)
- 1/3 cup of rolled oats
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 1 teaspoon honey
Top the mixture with almonds before sealing the container tightly. You can serve it cold or warmed up.
5Protein Bars: Cranberry Almond Protein Bars
Protein bars are very convenient for nurses. They are small and can be consumed quickly. Apart from boosting energy, they can also help prevent overeating which is extremely common among burnt-out and exhausted nurses.
Protein bars, however, aren’t made with the same ingredients. Some of them, particularly those that can be bought in grocery stores, are prepared with high amounts of sugar as well as fat. Snacking on this kind of protein bars can cause weight gain and, in extreme cases, diabetes.
A healthier alternative to buying ready-made protein bars is to make your own at home. They are relatively easy to make in the sense that measuring ingredients isn’t that strict. You can choose any nuts and fruits you want to add, too.
Cranberry almond protein bar is one of the best grab-and-go snacks for nurses. It has the seeds, nuts and the right sweetness to entice your taste buds and boost your energy level.
Take a large mixing bowl and combine the following:
- Cranberries (Dried)
- Puffed rice cereal
- Coconut flakes (Unsweetened)
- Chia seeds
Take out a small sauce pan and heat the following:
- 1/3 cup of brown rice syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoon honey
- Once it is ready, pour the binding syrup to your mixture of almonds and stir quickly. You have to do this step very fast since the syrup hardens quickly.
- Transfer everything to a lined baking dish and press down firmly.
- Once it has hardened and cooled down to room temperature, lift the parchment paper and begin cutting the bars to your desired size.
- Store them at room temperature.
Nurses, we swear by these recipes as we make and enjoy these ourselves. Don’t always opt for fast food or unhealthy quick fixes. Take the time to get the ingredients above and you’ll soon be patting yourself in the back for preparing (fast and easy) healthy snacks for yourself.
See Also: 12 Vitamin D Recipes for Night Shift Nurses