Energizing Foods for Lupus
Dealing with lupus is more than just fighting the big battles for your health and survival. Yes, there are often frightening symptoms we worry about; a heavy pain in the chest and difficulty breathing quickly equates to, “Is it my lungs or my heart this time?”
We don’t worry because we want to. We worry because we have to. It is a real threat.
A lupie lives with this kind of real fear all the time. I realize from experience that I may want to ignore a symptom, but honestly it could be dangerous to my health that one time that I do.
This worry and lupus stress can also fuel a flare and suck our energy dry. Be aware that there is a fine line between healthy caution and being overly fearful, and it can affect your health.
Then there are the daily choices we make about what we put into our bodies and the activities we take on. With lupus, we never know which of our many daily choices will come together to create the perfect storm; a full-blown flare.
Lupus warriors know that the activities we choose, combined with the quality of our sleep, the weather, stress and a myriad of other seemingly insignificant choices we make can play a role in how much energy we have to tackle the coming day. And I believe that what I put into my body can be equally impactful on whether lupus goes into attack mode and how much energy I have to fight back. Let's go over what foods for lupus help and detract from your energy levels and overall health.
You Are What You Eat: Energy and Health
It is a pretty well-known concept — you are what you eat. Eat processed, greasy, or fast foods and you will probably compromise your health in some way.
With lupus, I believe that is 100 percent truth. There are numerous foods you can eat to help in your goal of increasing energy levels and your chances of facing the day with more energy and less discomfort.
After a lot of research into improving my eating habits, I have found certain foods better at providing that energy.
- Smoothies: Try adding a touch of fresh mint to any fruit based or chocolate almond milk smoothie. Fresh mint is loaded with natural antiviral medicinal agents. Add ginger powder to a yogurt or almond milk based smoothie for its anti-inflammatory benefits. Cranberry juice can reduce the bacteria traveling throughout your bloodstream and is said to cleanse the body and arteries of things that can lead to infection.
- Sweet potatoes: It might be their low glycemic level (less than white potatoes), which means the body burns their energy slow and steady rather than getting a momentary boost, but I am convinced that I have more energy if I keep these in my diet a few days per week. Try baking them like a regular potato or peel and slice into strips like fries.
- Rice and veggies: I steam fresh yellow squash, zucchini and broccoli and serve them over rice that I season with a touch of curry and turmeric. Turmeric is considered a powerful natural anti-inflammatory, so I try to incorporate it into my cooking. The combination of rice with veggies increases my energy. Broccoli has energy-boosting antioxidants and is believed to calm nerves and promote sleep, which helps with energy the next day.
- Eggs: Yes, simple as it sounds, a couple of eggs have the protein I need and none of the bad things I will find at the drive-thru window. I boil them and they, along with some organic sweet potato chips, serve as a healthy and quick lunch.