“Shouldn’t I have an ‘energy’ bar and a ‘power’ drink when my energy levels feel low?”
It depends what you mean by energy bar and power drink! Unfortunately, those two terms bring to my mind items that are not necessarily food and are, furthermore, not such a good nutritional choice for you!
Quite often, canned drinks, packaged bars and such labeled ‘energy’ this or ‘power’ that are named so due to their inclusion of ingredients like herbal stimulants or sugar! Sure, they might give you a quick pick-me-up, but that’s often nothing more than a sugar rush.
If you’re starving and your blood sugar dips to lower than ideal levels, you may think, at the moment, that you ‘need’ sugar. In a sense, it’s true- your body does need sugar to function at a very basic level, but it needs many other balanced nutrients as well to function optimally. Ingesting white, processed table sugar in addition to substances like herbal ephedra, or various versions of caffeine, stimulates a blood sugar rush indeed (not to mention heart palpitations, sweating and nervousness in some people!), but soon after a blood sugar crash is to follow.
A much better idea would be to prevent your blood sugar from dipping that low in the first place, by eating small, regular, balanced meals throughout the day. However, if you’ve already reached desperately low blood sugar and you’re starry eyed and ready to faint- there’s still hope. DON’T settle for some junk you might see at the gas-station-mart!
First, have some water. Dehydration can easily be mistaken for hunger. Then, have a wise snack: choose some sliced turkey breast, an apple and some almonds. Or how about some baby carrots and hard boiled eggs? (Incidentally, all of the previous items are such that one can prepare ahead of time and have on hand in the fridge or pantry at home, or at work! I’ve even seen them at convenience shoppes!)
Rule of thumb: keep it balanced- some lean protein, some healthy fat and some unprocessed carbohydrates. Stick to this and your body will appreciate it!