You’ve heard the saying, “You are what you eat” before, right? Well, as trite as the saying might be, there’s a lot of truth to it. What we eat directly affects how we look and feel. More specifically, eating the wrong foods can leave you feeling tired and unable to focus. If you don’t want to drag through the work day, try avoiding some of these foods.
1. Turkey—Turkey is probably the most popular “sleepy food” there is. Remember the Seinfeld episode where Jerry fed his girlfriend a heaping serving of turkey so she would fall asleep and he could play with her rare toys? The reason turkey makes you tired is because it contains tryptophan, an amino acid that relaxes the body. Now, eating a turkey sandwich probably won’t put you to sleep, but you should monitor how much turkey you ingest.
2. High sugar candy—Sugary candy and foods can trick you into thinking they actually add energy when they don’t. That’s because when you first eat them, your blood sugar levels go way up. However, the body then instinctually releases insulin, and your blood sugar levels drop rapidly. The result? You crash as you run out of energy.
3. Fried foods—Because fried foods are so fatty, it takes much more energy to break them down during digestion. As a result, eating French fries or fried chicken is a surefire way to quickly drain your body of energy.
4. Red meat—Red meats take longer to digest than almost any other food. This means your body needs to use much more energy to break down red meat than it would for, say, a slice of fish.
5. Alcohol—Have you ever noticed how tired you get after drinking a glass or 2 of wine? The reason for this is that alcohol actually slows down the body’s central nervous system. This causes you to feel completely drained and wiped out. Unfortunately, alcohol can also contribute to insomnia, meaning you won’t be able to get the rest necessary to get your energy levels back up.
6. Bread—Because bread contains carbs, eating too much of it can sap you of energy. This is because bread causes your body to quickly raise and decrease its blood sugar levels. It’s the peak and valley symptoms: one second you’re feeling full of energy, the next, you’re dead tired.
7. Pasta—Pasta is another starchy food that can cause a sudden drop in your blood sugar levels. That’s because starch is stored in your body as a sugar. As I mentioned earlier, when your blood sugar levels increase, your body releases insulin, causing the blood sugar levels to come crashing down.
It’s worth noting that eating too much of any food will leave you feeling tired and probably a little sick. That’s because your body will have to direct most of its energy to breaking down your big meal, leaving little energy for you to do anything else.
Which foods tend to make you tired?