The afternoon slump: coming back from your lunch break and battling those mid-afternoon blues, with tiredness and fatigue creeping in. If you’ve had a busy morning of meetings or had a big project to complete, it can be difficult to get yourself back in the game and keep concentration levels up. It’s especially difficult in the summer when the sun is shining, and you’re stuck inside behind a desk.
Feeling more tired after lunch is completely normal, according to Dr Fiona Kerr, a neuro specialist from the University of Adelaide who explains that humans are designed for two sleeps a day. In a working day, however, many of us simply don’t have that luxury. With that in mind, supporting your nutritional needs and looking after your body is a sure-fire way to assist with your general wellbeing and it can also help to keep you feeling on top form for longer periods of the day.
Here are four ways to help you beat that mid-day slump and prepare for a productive afternoon:
1. Eat Well
A good way to sustain energy levels throughout the day is to eat healthily and regularly. This means eating small and healthy portions every 3 to 4 hours.
Eating three balanced meals per day is recommended, with healthy carbohydrates as the basis of sustained energy release. Unrefined carbohydrates are a good source of B vitamins, which help support normal energy yielding metabolism.
Great nibbles for your desk include fruit and vegetables, which help towards your 5-a-day. These are good sources of vitamins, minerals and fibre – nutrients that your body needs to work properly.
2. Get up and get moving
Sitting and staring at a screen for long periods can lead to dipping energy levels and lack of concentration - breaks and exercise can help you get your mojo back.
Although it would be a dream to get to the gym every lunch break, time constraints can sometimes make this near impossible. Remind yourself to get a break at least once every hour by setting an alarm, whether it’s to fill up your water bottle or stepping outside for 10 minutes.
3. Get a good night's rest
Sleep may seem like the most obvious option, but with everyday life getting busier it can sometimes be extremely difficult to get a good night’s rest before the start of the next working day.
A good night’s sleep can help with concentration, improve your memory and lead to improved judgement and problem-solving. Top ways to get a good night’s sleep include avoiding excessive nap time during the day, taking time to relax before bed and trying to get into a routine with sleep.
Check out our 5 simple steps to a better night’s sleep.
4. Stay hydrated
According to the NHS, we should be drinking sufficient fluid each day to maintain optimum hydration levels. Sometimes, you can get that lethargic feeling simply because you’re not hydrated enough. Water is a healthy way of quenching thirst and contains no calories or sugars that can lead to an energy crash later in the day.
Dehydration can lead to dizziness, confusion and headaches. However, to combat this, try getting a water bottle for your desk that holds plenty so it will last between rest breaks.
If you’re struggling to eat as healthily as you’d like, you can support your vitamin intake by adding a VÖOST Performance Vitamin B+ tablet to 200ml of water. It contains Vitamins B2, B6 & B12, Vitamin C and Magnesium which help to support normal energy yielding metabolism (the conversion of food into energy) and contribute to a reduction in tiredness and fatigue.
Now available online and in Superdrug stores nationwide.