Why Lunch Is The Most Important Meal Of The Day

Many people have the idea that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and even though it’s important not to skip breakfast, lunch may actually be more beneficial. Founder of Nourish Naturally, Rebecca Gawthorne shares why lunch is important.

lunch

A healthy, balanced lunch is essential for providing your body and brain with the energy it needs to power through afternoon and evening. If you have a physically demanding job, then it’s important to provide your muscles with sustained energy to work. If you are situated at a desk all day, lunch is key to giving your brain the nutrients it needs to focus and think clearly.

Eating in the middle of the day also helps keep your metabolism active & prevents you from reaching for the cookie jar later in the afternoon. In fact, those who skip lunch or opt for an unhealthy choice, can suffer from fatigue, lapses in concentration and ‘brain fog’. This is due to spikes and drops in blood sugar levels. Your brain runs purely off glucose (sugar), so when your blood sugar levels drop, the energy to your brain drops too. If you’re often reaching for something sweet in the afternoon, you may want to re-assess your lunch choice.

Lunch is also necessary for you to receive the adequate nutrients required for general health & wellbeing and to prevent nutrient deficiencies. One of the best ways to make sure your daily nutrition targets are met and your energy stays balanced is to opt for a fresh meal containing lots of fresh vegetables, wholegrains and protein. This will prevent 3:30-itis and keep you feeling fuller for longer.

Here are some good ideas of what you can include in your lunch meal:

– Source of lean protein e.g. fish, eggs, beans, lentils, tofu, chicken breast
– Source of low GI carbs e.g. sweet potato, brown rice, quinoa, wholegrain pasta, beans, lentils, wholegrain bread/wrap
– A mix of colourful veggies – e.g. baby spinach, beetroot, purple cabbage, pumpkin, tomato, cucumber
– A healthy fat – e.g. avocado, nuts, olive oil, seeds

As many of us lead busy lifestyles it can be difficult to keep on top of a healthy lunch routine, especially if you find yourself eating out a lot. That’s why it’s important to keep the above list in mind when choosing what to have for lunch. When you do order out try visiting a healthy lunch spot such as Sumo Salad, instead of somewhere that will sway you towards an unhealthy option. If you really want to avoid temptation and save yourself time you can also pre-order your lunch from their app!

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