Do you suffer from sluggishness and sleepiness somewhere in between having your lunch and right before the office hours are through? It’s called the afternoon slump and you are not the only one who is suffering from it.
Here are some of the most common causes of the afternoon slump as well as some quick fixes:
A Carb-Packed Lunch
It’s no secret that adding some carbohydrates to the diet is important in order to keep the mind and body energized. It is a completely different story, however, if your lunch is very high in carbohydrates — rather than making you alert and energetic, it’s something that will leave you feeling extremely sleepy.
What goes up must go down, and you will certainly suffer from an afternoon slump the moment your blood sugar drops.
Rather than opt for lunch that’s teeming with carbohydrates, go for a well-balanced meal. See to it that you are supplying your body with just the right amounts of fat, protein and of course carbohydrates.
One of the things that you tend to forget to do while you’re very busy is to drink a glass of water. Since your brain is about 75 percent water, according to scientists, it doesn’t really come as a surprise why you may experience a sheer drop in alertness and ability to concentrate if your body is parched.
Needless to say, you should never forget the importance of keeping your body well-hydrated throughout the day.
Health experts recommend consuming approximately 2 liters of water a day — that’s not a lot as a couple of liters of water is just equivalent to 8 trips to the water fountain throughout the office hours.
A Drop in Temperature
Scientists say that the core temperature of your body naturally drops between 2 pm and 4 pm. This prompts the body to produce melatonin, a hormone that’s tasked at regulating your sleep-wake cycle.
As a general rule of thumb, the more melatonin you have in your body the sleepier you feel.
Worry not as there are various ways to counteract the sleep-inducing properties of melatonin or keeping your core temperature from dropping in the first place. You could listen to some up-tempo tunes, take a warm shower if possible, or take a brisk walk outside to get exposed to the sun — don’t forget to apply sunscreen!
Speaking of taking a brisk walk, it’s for certain that you will feel lethargic and sleepy if you do nothing all day long but to sit right in front of your computer — being still causes your body to think that it’s time for you to get some shut-eye.
Every hour, it’s a good idea for you to leave your desk for a couple of minutes and walk or stretch.
Being seated at the workplace all the time is regarded as a sedentary lifestyle, and we all know the unfavorable effects of not getting enough physical activity per day. Increased blood sugar, type 2 diabetes, unnecessary weight gain, elevated blood pressure, heart attack, stroke — these are just some of the things that a sedentary lifestyle is known to bring.
Are you not getting 7 to 9 hours of rejuvenating sleep at night? Then don’t be surprised if it seems like you are suffering from the worst kinds of the afternoon slump. In fact, it’s not just in the afternoon that you may feel the urge to get some shut-eye, but also at any other given time of the day.
Your mind and body are simply clamoring for some much-needed Z’s and that’s why you are feeling that way.
If possible, go get a power nap which lasts anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes only — scientists say that anything longer than that will only leave you feeling even more sluggish and sleepy.