Beating the Afternoon Energy Slump
Craving caffeine, biscuits or choclate as a life saver to get you through the mid afternoon slump?
It may be something you are eating (or not) at lunch that is causing you to run out of steam.
You choose a salad for lunch, trying to keep your weight under control and to be healthy but it’s not enough.
So you revert back to a salad sandwich, pasta or rice with veges to boost you up.
You get a lift but then find yourself barely able to keep your eyes open in that dreary boardroom meeting.
If you’re lunch has high GI carbs in it (think white bread, rice, pasta) or even large amounts of low GI carbs (wholegrain types) your blood sugar levels may be spiking too high and then dropping too low mid afternoon causing you to run out of energy.
Too many carbs also helps increase serotonin production, your chill out hormone that ‘s more likely to make you want to nap rather than negotiate contracts. Keep these for a good night’s sleep instead.
What to do?
Eat lunch. Many people skip lunch because they are too busy but you will be more productive if you give yourself time to refuel.
Combine a balance of low GI carbs (think high fibre, high water carbs i.e. non startchy veges) with protein and good fats to stabilise blood sugar levels & limit the starchy carbs.
Include enough protein to maintain energy levels. It also keeps you fuller for longer and provides nutrients to increase hormones that keep you focused and alert.
Salmon or chickpea vegetable salad.
Prawn & vegetable stirfry – Skip (or reduce) rice & noodles
Chicken & salad wholemeal wrap (ditch the extra carbs you get in a sandwich or a roll).
If you workout at lunch time or have a high metabolism include a little starchy carbs like sweet potato or beans or lentils.
Some people need to eat more often than three meals to keep energy stable. If that’s you top up with a protein snack about 15minutes before you start dreaming of your pillow to keep you going until dinner time.
Yogurt with some berries
A hard boiled egg
Piece of cheese
Small tin of tuna
Hummous (made with protein rich chickpeas & tahini) with some vege snacks.