Trying to fight mesothelioma isn’t for cowards. It takes every bit of courage and energy you can muster. Given the realities of the disease, the toll it takes and all that you need to do – doctor appointments, lab visits, attorney meetings and more- it is easy to feel overwhelmed with fatigue. There are simple changes you can make to your diet to help fight mesothelioma fatigue and sustain your level of energy throughout the day.
Here, based on suggestions from Caring.com, are 5 foods that provide sustained energy and are rich in nutrients that help convert food into energy. Check with your doctor before adding a new food to your diet.
1. Oatmeal Oatmeal is regarded as a super food when it comes to supporting digestive health. In addition to its high fiber content, oatmeal is a good source of nutrients such as magnesium, protein, phosphorus, and B1 (thiamine).
When to eat it: Eat oatmeal first thing in the morning for energy. Breakfast is especially important because it replenishes energy reserves and sets the tone for your day.
How to enjoy it: Go for old-fashioned, minimally processed oats, and avoid the instant and flavored varieties.
2. Yogurt Yogurt contains probiotics, beneficial bacteria that help maintain a healthy gut ecosystem by protecting against pathogens and helping your body eliminate harmful bacteria. Like fiber, probiotics are a powerful digestive aid. Yogurt also provides calcium, carbs and protein.
When to eat it: Absolutely any time. Aside from its health benefits, one of the best things about yogurt is its versatility. Yogurt can stand alone or blend into a smoothie or soup.
How to enjoy it: Go for the Greek. Greek yogurt contains about twice the amount of protein as the regular kind, and it has a richer, creamier consistency, which makes it seems like an indulgence. Try adding healthy toppings like nuts and fruit.
3. Spinach Not only is spinach one of the most iron-dense food sources on earth, it’s also extremely rich in magnesium and potassium and is an excellent source of energy-supporting B-vitamins.
When to eat it: Try steamed spinach and eggs for breakfast; tuck spinach into your sandwich at lunch; layer it in your lasagna at dinner.
How to enjoy it: All those wonderful nutrients in spinach are more easily digested cooked than raw. Fortunately, spinach is so mild you can add it to just about anything — soups, stews, casseroles, dips, smoothies, and stir-fries.
4. Nuts and Seeds Pumpkin seeds, almonds, cashews, and hazelnuts are all good sources of magnesium, which can help fight muscle fatigue. The amino acid tryptophan found in sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, cashews, walnuts, and almonds battles emotional fatigue and promotes sleep, which can ease physical weariness. And all nuts and seeds are excellent sources of high-quality protein that our bodies can convert into lasting energy. Bonus: they are also rich in omega-3 fats which help promote cell health. Be sure to rule out nut allergies before you try these.
When to eat them: A daily dose of nuts is the way to go. Prepack or buy single servings to take with you for an energy boost on the go.
How to enjoy them: Mix with a little bit of dried fruit for your own trail mix or spread a nut butter on crackers or bread.
5. Beans Beans are on the frontlines when it comes to fighting fatigue. Beans are a concentrated source of stable, slow-burning energy due to their unique nutritional composition. The protein and high fiber content in beans work together to help balance blood sugar. Their fiber also promotes digestive health. Beans also are packed with minerals essential for energy production.
When to eat them: Make a mild chili for lunch or sub a half a cup of beans for rice or mashed potatoes at dinner.
How to enjoy them: For a change, try hummus, a dip made with garbanzo beans.