Energy... who doesn't want more of it? It's never fun having to pull yourself out of bed and struggle to stay awake throughout the day. There's only so much that coffee can do, but luckily there are other ways to bring up the energy levels. Unfortunately, some of the foods you may be consuming can make you more tired, here are the ones you should avoid if you wanna feel more awake!
Refined carbohydrates - try and stay away from foods that lack fiber, and are high in sugar and carbs. Clinical nutritionist, Cassie Brown, explained, "White pastas, breads, crackers, candy, juices, granola, etc. I've seen clients' blood sugar spiking dramatically after eating oatmeal, juices, and other foods marketed as 'healthy,' then they're slumped and exhausted an hour later." But not all carbs are created equal. Instead of eating the ones that will make you sleepy, opt for oatmeal or rice, since these carbs contain soluble fiber.
Ironically, the thing that may help you stay awake for a few hours can be harming your energy levels in the long run. Coffee or any other source of caffeine can cause you to be exhausted after the effects have worn off. "Caffeine actually blocks the hormone adenosine that makes us sleepy. So when the caffeine wears off, and we have high levels of adenosine, we'll feel the fatigue again. Caffeine also stimulates the release of cortisol, aka our major stress hormone, and having too much cortisol can cause stress and fatigue," the nutritionist revealed.
The third food item to avoid should be red meat. Have you ever had a burger for lunch and felt like you need to crawl into bed right after? That feeling probably occurred because the way red meat is processed makes it difficult for our body to break down and digest. It takes up too much energy in our body, leaving none for the rest of the day. "Red meat contains a high amount of tryptophan, an amino acid that makes serotonin and melatonin, which regulates our sleep cycle. Red meat can also contribute to fatigue if we're not digesting it properly," said Brown. To get the most natural energy, try to not overconsume these items, and you should be good to go! Check out Cassie Brown's website for more information.