It’s always been taught that your favorite desserts like cake, chocolates and ice cream are the main culprits for making you feel sleepy. You’ll be surprised to learn that there are actually some healthy foods which can make you count the hours till bedtime!
- Your friendly ‘salad’
If you think you are safe with a bowl of salad, you got to think twice! Yes, it’s true that a salad is a light lunch. However salads with perhaps a helping of iceberg lettuce, Ranch dressing, some cauliflower florets and some shaved carrots skimp on proteins and carbs. So you end up with insufficient calories to power you through the day.
This means it’s not surprising if you end up feeling hungry and tired at 4 pm if you had a lunch of a 200-calorie of lettuce and broccoli. The main culprit here is your choice of dressing like honey mustard or raspberry vinaigrette. These dressings are usually high in added sugar, and may lead to an energy crash later on.
A better option is making a healthy foods salad of non-starchy vegetables like cauliflower, peppers, mushroom and leafy greens like kale, some protein like chicken or chickpeas and some complex carbohydrates like quinoa or edamame which provides a slow-burning energy source. Extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice or vinegar is a good dressing to use.
- Nuts and bananas
Bananas are often advised as a fix for muscle cramps as they are high in magnesium, the mineral which relaxes muscle cells. This is why magnesium is given at night to help them sleep. Nuts, especially almonds, peanuts and cashews are also high in magnesium and may make you feel drowsy.
However as this usually occurs only if you have a magnesium deficiency, if you don’t have the deficiency, it should be ok eating them. Some symptoms for magnesium deficiency you should look out for are loss of appetite, fatigue and nausea and a high risk of gastrointestinal diseases and celiac diseases for those with type 2 diabetes.
- Yogurt and string cheese
Though you may not be happy hearing this, dairy can be the reason for your fatigue. You may have digested it fine when you were young, but as you age, you may develop an intolerance for proteins in dairy like casein and whey to leave you feeling tired.
While the mechanism is not clear, it’s thought that the body develops an immunological response to the proteins wherein they build an army of antibodies to mobilize these proteins when they show up. This leads to fatigue.
However dairy is present practically everywhere in our foods. There are some processed foods you wouldn’t know has milk solids and proteins in them like caramel flavoring which usually has dairy additives in it.
If you feel drained of energy after eating dairy, it’s better you consult your doctor who may suggest going on an elimination diet. This is a diet Blake-Gumbs uses where all potential culprits are removed from a patient’s diet and then slowly reintroduced to find out which is the actual culprit.
For more info on drowsy healthy foods, just wait for the next post!