Who doesn't know it - no sooner is the lunch break over than great tiredness sets in. Now a round of naps, that's it, but it's not just that easy for most employees.
But: Where does it actually come from, the midday low? Why is it that we have a low performance after eating and how can this be prevented?
The midday slump: need for rest after the first “round of work”
It is human nature to cycle between activity and rest. This is nothing more than our natural power curve - a high follows a low and vice versa. It's true that not everyone's clock ticks the same way here, but there are still similarities. For most people, the midday slump hits around 2 p.m., when lunch is over. It leads to tiredness and lack of concentration.
The performance seems to sag right after lunch. And that is quite normal, as it corresponds to our natural biorhythm. However, we can influence how severe this kink in the performance curve is - through the right food.
Great tiredness after lunch
When we have eaten, digestion begins. What many people don't realize is that it consumes a lot of energy. The gastrointestinal tract is supplied with significantly more blood and there is really something to do. Therefore, less oxygen-rich blood is available for the brain during the digestion phase. No wonder, then, if nothing works after a particularly large meal. The heavier what we eat, the more we fall into a midday slump. Heavy, which in this case means greasy. But it's not just about the fat in the food, it's also about the sugar content. If we take in too much sugar, then there is also a drop in performance because the blood sugar curve falls relatively quickly after eating.
Tips against the tiresome midday slump
So what should it look like, the ideal lunch where the subsequent low is moderate? And what else should you consider if you suffer from this low performance?
- Lunch should consist of lots of vegetables
- It is better to avoid greasy meat, sausage and fries
- Don't eat excessively large portions
- Eat regularly: it is better to eat smaller amounts more often than one large one
- Air the room regularly or take a short walk after eating
- If possible, take a short nap
- Eat healthy snacks in between - fruit, nuts, granola bars, snack balls
- Choose light food that is combined with protein-rich foods such as legumes or fish
- Pay attention to valuable carbohydrates. Whole grain products are better than products made from white flour
- In general, do not overdo the amount of carbohydrates
- After lunch, plan activities that are not too mentally or physically taxing.
What foods are preferable at lunch?
Below are a few examples and tips for light lunches.
- Choose poultry instead of beef and pork
- Give preference to fish and seafood
- Sometimes switch to vegetarian or vegan alternatives
- Eat a large salad plate (e.g. Greek farmer's salad)
- Do not choose dishes that contain an excessive amount of cheese (e.g. Käsespätzle)
- Tofu with stir-fried vegetables is a good choice
- Switch to low-fat alternatives for cheese, cream and quark
- Couscous or lentil salad, spring rolls, wraps, sandwiches, sushi, glass noodle soup, chickpea stew , etc. are suitable to take away.
In general, you should give preference to dishes that are easy to digest and do not contain excessive fat or sugar. Because: The more complex the digestion process is, the more energy the body needs for it, which is then lacking elsewhere.
Quick lunch without a midday slump - ready meals by the Löwenanteil
Our ready meals are designed to accompany you fit through everyday life. That means: if possible no midday low. That's why we use high-quality ingredients, lots of vegetables and legumes. Packed in jars, you can also take our ready meals with you to work and enjoy them. In just 3 minutes you'll have a wholesome meal that won't leave you feeling stuffed!
Drinking – also an important component
Drinking also plays an important role. It should be at least 1.5 liters a day, ideally water or unsweetened tea. It goes without saying that alcohol is counterproductive.
Working with brains?
If you need your head at work, you would do well to eat fewer calories rather than too many. Because only then can the body quickly return to its full potential. So the following motto should always apply at lunch: the brain is taken care of, but the body is not overloaded. With a meal that provides us with high-quality nutrients, this is more successful than with a schnitzel and fries.
Why is there a midday slump?
Performance curves are human nature. So it is quite normal for a high to be followed by a low. We can influence how extreme this low turns out to be through diet, among other things.
What is suitable for lunch against the midday slump?
Light meals are best. Vegetables, legumes, fish, eggs, rice, etc. In general, it should not be too sweet and not too greasy.
What else can you do against the midday slump?
Take a nap, get some fresh air, or take a break. Drinking a lot also helps to prevent this.