According to medical research, it's relatively normal that many people encounter an urge to sleep in the afternoon, especially after lunch. This condition is called the afternoon slump, characterized by fatigue, moodiness, frequent yawning, sleepiness, and lack of concentration. Notably, the afternoon slump depends on the type of food eaten for lunch. If you have meals with high-fat content, your body will slow down, lowering afternoon productivity. How do you beat the slump? This article takes a closer look at how to get an afternoon energy kick from proper nutrition.
When your body is dehydrated, feeling unenergetic is expected, which in turn affects your concentration. Consequently, for your body to function correctly after lunch, proper hydration is essential. Make an effort to drink water throughout the day frequently, more so during hot weather after lunch to beat sluggishness. Furthermore, based on scientific research, you should aim at drinking 6 to 8 glasses of water each day to boost energy from afternoon nutrition.
Have Protein-rich Foods for Lunch
Proteins such as chicken and eggs block serotonin production (sleep-inducing hormone) and boost norepinephrine and dopamine production. These brain chemicals enhance your alertness, which increases concentration ability. Other than that, protein-based foods build your muscles, making you stronger.
Avoid Sugary Foods
Sugary meals such as juice and chocolate increase blood sugar levels, giving you a quick energy boost. Nonetheless, this effect is short-lived, and as soon as the blood sugar levels drop, you begin to feel dizzy and tired. As a result, it’s advisable to replace sugar-processed snacks with fruits such as oranges, apples, and pears.
Avoid Heavy Meals at Lunch
Excessive eating during lunchtime strains the digestive system, increasing drowsiness. Ensure you eat smaller meals with portions of proteins, carbohydrates, and lots of fruits.
Incorporate Lots of Vitamin B
Vitamin B complex is known popularly to control circadian rhythm limiting after-lunch sleepiness feeling. Familiar sources of vitamin B complex include greens like spinach, parsley, and kales. Besides, eating tofu, broccoli, and beets provides enough vitamin B. To maintain your energy levels in the afternoon, ensure that you eat lunch salads that comprise dark leafy vegetables with toppings of salmon.
Have a Snack
Having a snack after eating your lunch boosts your blood sugar level, which improves alertness. However, consider snacks with small portions of carbohydrates, low to medium GI, and lots of fiber. Some of the best snacks to have after your lunch include yogurt and fruits like apples and oranges.
Apart from adopting the above guidelines, you can take a walk or do some exercises after lunch to boost energy levels and beat the afternoon slump adequately. Additionally, avoid skipping breakfast as you might be tempted to overeat during lunch, affecting your alertness. You can also try deploying aromatherapy after lunch to boost blood circulation and mind alertness, or getting some cold air after lunch meals. With these tips, you can maintain high-energy levels after lunch while boosting your productivity, helping you work easier.