The April diet: the menus of the week to combat spring fatigue

The April diet: the menus of the week to combat spring fatigue

Sweet April sleep? Not anymore, if you choose the right foods to bring to the table recommended by your doctor and nutritionist

The beginning of spring marks profound changes in our body. The circadian rhythms that regulate the sleep / wake processes, with the increasing hours of light, change and it is for this reason that during the month of April you may feel more tired and sleepy than usual. It is no coincidence that they say "April, sweet sleep".

"Because, if it is true that the hands go back one hour – explains Dr. Corrado Pierantoni, specialist in endocrinology and metabolic diseases and clinical nutritionist in Lanciano (Ch) – the body continues to move forward with the 'clock' of the sun ". And here the classic symptoms appear, to which insomnia is very often added. "But be careful – warns the endocrinologist – a lack of sleep during the night causes the production of ghrelin, a hormone that stimulates the desire for sweets and carbohydrates, thus contributing to the risk of weight gain". A condition definitely to be avoided.

But the solution exists. And it is to bring to the table special foods and micronutrients that can help us face the day with energy and make us rest better at night, in order to leave recharged.

Index

  • The substances to bring to the table
  • The menus of the week
    • MONDAY
    • TUESDAY
    • WEDNESDAY
    • THURSDAY
    • FRIDAY
    • SATURDAY
    • SUNDAY

The substances to bring to the table

A help from magnesium

Magnesium is the fourth most important ion in the human body and the second, after potassium, within cells. A truly essential mineral as it performs numerous functions: it is in fact essential for the synthesis of proteins, lipids (fats), nucleic acids and for the metabolism of glucose, with functions that affect the cardiovascular system and diabetes.

But it is known above all as the "energy mineral". And with good reason, because it enters practically all vital biochemical processes, especially in the production of cellular energy. Not surprisingly, its deficiency can cause fatigue, drops in concentration and mood and drowsiness.

Magnesium is present in almost all foods, but the foods that contain the most are oilseeds (especially pistachios), cocoa powder, brown rice and cow's milk.

On the table, green light also for radicchio, very rich in carotenes and folic acid, but also in magnesium.

The importance of iron

Other foods useful for bringing energy to the kitchen are those rich in iron. Any anemia due to a lack of this mineral can easily cause fatigue. The foods that contain it in high doses are those of animal origin, such as red and white meat, which are also sources of noble proteins of high biological value: they contain all nine essential amino acids that man is not able to synthesize and which must be taken through the diet.

Other sources of this micronutrient are legumes and green leafy vegetables. However, it must be remembered that the iron present in foods of plant origin is more difficult to absorb than in foods of animal origin; for this reason it is good to take them together with foods that contain vitamin C, a micronutrient that increases the bioavailability of iron. The ideal combinations? A steak with salad dressed with lemon juice, bresaola with rocket and lemon, a chicken breast with chard and grapefruit. Green light also for strawberries: in addition to containing vitamin C, they are among the fruits richest in iron.

Vitamins of group B

They are among the most useful vitamins to deal with the loss of fatigue. In particular, vitamin B1 is present in whole grains, wheat germ, pork, liver, legumes and nuts. Vitamin B6 is found in wheat germ, liver, meat, fish, whole grains, potatoes, avocados, bananas and legumes. Vitamin B9 (also called folic acid) is contained in abundance in green leafy vegetables. On the other hand, B12 is present in meat, dairy products and shellfish.

Omega 3

They are believed to be the most brain-friendly fats. They are divided into short-chain omega 3 fatty acids, called ALA (Alpha Linolenic Acid) typical of us walnuts, linseed and chia and long-chain EPA and DHA, found above all in salmon, trout and blue fish. To a lesser extent also in algae.

The food day

“The human body – explains Dr. Pierantoni – is a great biochemical formula and everything we take during the day induces the body to secrete hormones that can give us an extra 'boost' when we need it, for example during working hours, or relax. It is therefore advisable to review the time at which meals are consumed and above all to eat at a rhythm: that is to have at least 5 daily contacts with food, about every 2-3 hours in order to keep blood sugar levels constant and avoid overproduction of insulin . To do this, it is essential to choose the right time to consume nutrients, especially carbohydrates and proteins ".

Raise your hand if you, after a hearty pasta-based lunch, have not suffered the classic fall asleep after a meal. "The blame for this lack of energy comes from the consumption of foods containing carbohydrates, perhaps after several hours of fasting, which cause the blood sugar to rise suddenly, causing the body to produce insulin, the post-meal hormone responsible for post-prandial fatigue ”, Says the nutritionist, who further recommends:“ Rule number 1, therefore, is to make snacks between meals in order to keep blood sugar constant throughout the day.

At lunch, which is the time when we should be more concentrated, green light for proteins, accompanied by seasonal vegetables and a slice of bread or, in place of this, a small portion of whole grains or potatoes.

At dinner, however, we can indulge in a carbohydrate-based dish (a choice of pasta, rice, cereals, legumes and potatoes), always accompanied by seasonal vegetables. This will also help us to rest better ”.

Energy and physical activity

"And let's not forget to move – concludes the expert – because physical exercise induces the body to release a series of neurotransmitters, first of all the famous endorphins, also called wellness hormones, with enormous benefits on mood, concentration and energy ".

The menus of the week

MONDAY

BREAKFAST: Green tea or coffee; 1 low-fat white yogurt HD (lactose-free); 1 small cup of strawberries 1 tablespoon of oat flakes
MORNING SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit

LUNCH: Swordfish with salmoriglio; 2 steamed potatoes; chard boiled with oil and lemon

AFTERNOON SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit; 1 cup of green tea

DINNER: Valerian salad; brown rice with tuna, lemon and zucchini

AFTER DINNER: 1 herbal tea

TUESDAY

BREAKFAST: Green tea or coffee; 1 glass of oat milk and 1 slice of toast with 1 teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil

MORNING SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit

LUNCH: Chicken curry with 1 tablespoon of black lentils and croutons

AFTERNOON SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit; 3 walnuts

DINNER: Lettuce salad; tagliatelle with artichokes with grated lemon zest

AFTER DINNER: 1 seasonal fruit

WEDNESDAY

BREAKFAST: Green tea or coffee; 1 low-fat white yogurt HD (lactose-free); 2 wholemeal rusks with a veil of honey

MORNING SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit

LUNCH: Radicchio salad; scrambled eggs with asparagus; 1 slice of toast

AFTERNOON SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit; 20 g of 80% dark chocolate

DINNER: Mixed salad; couscous salad with carrots, fennel, broccoli florets and oil seeds

AFTER DINNER: 1 herbal tea

THURSDAY

BREAKFAST: Green tea or coffee; 1 yogurt; 1 slice of toast with 1 teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil

MORNING SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit

LUNCH: Lettuce salad; croutons with goat cheese mousse and mint and diced zucchini cooked in a pan with red Tropea onion

AFTERNOON SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit; 1 tablespoon of unsalted peanuts

DINNER: Cherry tomato salad; cannellini bean hummus with vegetables in pinzimonio

AFTER DINNER: 1 herbal tea

FRIDAY

BREAKFAST: Green tea or coffee; 1 glass of almond milk (or HD milk); 3 dry biscuits

MORNING SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit

LUNCH: Salmon with citrus fruits; steamed spinach; 1 slice of toasted wholemeal bread

AFTERNOON SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit; 1 cup of green tea

DINNER: Lettuce salad, apples and hazelnuts; risotto with asparagus

AFTER DINNER: 1 herbal tea

SATURDAY

BREAKFAST: Green tea or coffee; 1 omelette consisting of 2 egg whites and 1 yolk; 1 slice of toast

MORNING SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit

LUNCH: Grilled veal steak; Pumpkin In Batter flowers; 1 slice of toasted wholemeal bread

AFTERNOON SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit; 5 almonds

DINNER: Mixed salad; bean and pea soup

AFTER DINNER: 1 seasonal fruit

SUNDAY

BREAKFAST: Green tea or coffee; 1 portion of fresh ricotta; 1 slice of toast

MORNING SNACK: 1 seasonal fruit

LUNCH: Mixed salad; turbot with potatoes

AFTERNOON SNACK: 1 mixed centrifuged; 20 g of 80% dark chocolate

DINNER: Radicchio and rocket salad; noodle soup with lentils

AFTER DINNER: 1 herbal tea

Tag: Diets

Category: Welfare
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