What Food Makes You Tired?

What Food Makes You Tired?

Dec 28, 2022

Feeling tired or sleepy after a meal is a relatively common experience. Unfortunately, it isn’t fun, especially if you still have loads of work or reading to complete. So, what makes you feel tired after eating, and what can you do about it? Keep on reading to find out!

What Makes You Sleepy After Eating?

Feeling sleepy or tired, particularly after eating, has something to do with what, when, and how much you ate.

For instance, a meal rich in carbohydrates and proteins can make you tired or sleepy. According to research, feeling sleepy or exhausted after eating has something to do with your body producing more serotonin. Serotonin is a messenger chemical that plays a key role in controlling various body functions like mode, sleep cycles, wound healing, sexual desire, bone health, nausea, digestion, and blood clotting.

Foods rich in proteins contain an amino acid called tryptophan, which stimulates the body to produce serotonin. Carbohydrates aid in tryptophan absorption in the body.

An amino acid (tryptophan) in many protein-rich foods helps the body produce serotonin. Carbohydrates help the body absorb tryptophan. That said, eating a meal rich in carbohydrates and proteins can make you sleepy.

Protein sources rich in tryptophan include salmon, poultry, seeds, milk, cheese, spinach, soy products, cheese, and eggs. Foods rich in carbohydrates include rice, milk, pasta, white bread, cakes, cookies, muffins, sugar, and candy.

Additionally, eating larger meals and later in the afternoons can make you feel sleepy than eating less at midday. Other factors that cause sleepiness or tiredness after a meal include poor sleep at night and taking food with alcoholic beverages.

What Food Makes You Tired?

Common foods that cause fatigue or tiredness include:

  • Bagels and muffins made from refined grains like white flour and sugars are high on the glycemic index, which can increase your insulin levels and blood sugars, making you feel tired or sleepy. If you must take it, opt for whole-wheat bagels.
  • Cereals are very nutritious, but most have high-fructose corn syrup and sugars linked to chronic fatigue.
  • Caffeinated drinks.
  • Fruit juices, pudding, and smoothies are high in sugars, which can cause a spike in your insulin levels and blood sugars, causing fatigue. Consider eating fruits low in sugars, like avocado, kiwis, and limes.
  • Artificially sweetened yogurts and milkshakes: While milk products like yogurt are healthy, adding sugars, colors, and other artificial products can cause energy issues.
  • Chips contain high carbohydrates and have lots of salt and unhealthy fats, which can affect your energy and cause tiredness.
  • Fizzy drinks contain many artificial sweeteners and colors, which can fluctuate your blood sugars up and down quickly, leaving you tired or sleepy.
  • Fried foods like chips and burgers have unhealthy fats and lots of salt, which can affect your energy levels, leaving you tired or sluggish.

Foods that fight fatigue

Below are foods that are less likely to cause tiredness or sleepiness:

  • Probiotics like unsweetened yogurt, tempeh, miso, kefir, and kombucha
  • Low-GI carbs like brown rice, steel-cut oats, chia seeds, and quinoa
  • Prebiotics like oats, beans, garlic, onions, leeks, and asparagus
  • Healthy fats like olive oil and avocados
  • Omega-3 fatty fish like salmon, tuna, herring, sardines, and mackerel

Fueling Minds offers healthy food for kids in Calgary, ensuring they stay active during school hours.

What Fruit Helps You Sleep?

Sometimes you can go to bed only to spend hours turning and tossing around without falling asleep. Below are five fruits you can have for better sleep:

  • Kiwi fruits. A University of North Carolina study showed that eating two kiwifruits within 1 hour of bedtime can reduce mid-sleep wakefulness by about 30% and give you a more restful sleep.
  • Bananas. Ripe bananas are rich in potassium and magnesium, which act like natural muscle relaxers. Therefore, eating a banana before bed can ease your body and help you sleep better.
  • Cherries. Cherries contain high melatonin levels, an essential hormone in the brain that regulates sleep. A study by Louisiana State University found that adults who took 8 ounces of tart cherry juice twice daily slept longer (85 minutes). Therefore, it can help people with insomnia.
  • Pineapples. Like cherries, pineapples are high in melatonin and can help you sleep faster and longer.
  • Berries. Blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries are rich in antioxidants which can help reduce physical stress, allowing you to sleep better.

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