As a dietitian, one of the most common complaints I hear from clients is a lack of energy in the mid-afternoon accompanied by intense sugar cravings. They feel so worn down by 3 or 4pm, that all they can do is reach into the cabinet for an artificial sugar rush. While the sugar provides a quick burst of energy, it is followed shortly by a crash, leaving them feeling even more tired than before. This pattern repeats itself day after day, and clients often feel like they are stuck in an impossible cycle of “feel tired – eat sugar – crash – repeat.”
How can you break this cycle? It requires a holistic approach, examining both your diet and lifestyle choices that may be causing your fatigue. Here are the most common culprits that could be sapping your energy, and our best tips for conquering the mid afternoon slump without relying on sugar.
Common Culprit: Not getting enough sleep.
Solution: Aim for eight hours of sleep every night.
Common Culprit: Too much stress!
Solution: Discover relaxation methods you love.
Common Culprit: Eating too much sugar.
Solution: Swap out high-sugar foods with whole food alternatives.
Common Culprit: Artificial sweeteners.
Solution: Go natural.
Common Culprit: Meals lack balance.
Solution: See Conquering Sugar Cravings Naturally
Common Culprit: Your meals lack zest!
Solution: See More Ways to Outsmart Sugar Cravings
Discover the fatigue-causing culprits in your life and make the choice to change your behaviors. If you’re not sure where to start, try keeping a journal to find patterns between your lifestyle and energy levels. Pay attention to your diet, hours of sleep, stress-levels, and relaxation techniques. You’ll quickly see which activities sap you, and which ones energize you.
1. Macedo, Diez-Garcia. Sweet craving and ghrelin and leptin levels in women during stress. Appetite 80 (2014) 264-270
We work with registered dietitians and nutrition scientists to provide nutrition education and healthy eating tips to help create future healthier generations through good nutrition. SuperKids Nutrition does not provide medical advice, medical nutrition therapy, diagnosis or treatment. See additional information.
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