For a long time, lunch was for me the most important meal of the day. Large plates of meat, French fries, sauces and sweets, all this was my regular food almost every day. Overall, I was quite all right, with no obvious ailments. Feeling sleepy after lunch was something normal – after all, digestion requires some blood to be diverted to the stomach, right?
Some days my sleepiness was worse than others – up to the point where I was unable to do meaningful work for 2-3 hours after eating. Coffee generously topped with sugar usually followed and rescued me from that state – at least apparently.
Fast forwarding a bit… the day when I received my annual medical check-up results finally came. I will never forget how the doctor looked at me and asked if anyone in my family had been diagnosed with diabetes. My blood sugar was way higher than normal. That moment was my wake-up signal – something HAD to be changed RIGHT THEN in the way I approached my diet. For me, that moment started everything I know and practise today in regard to the alkaline diet.
I’m now glad and grateful to see that my sugar levels are perfectly balanced. I no longer experience post-lunch drowsiness. My energy is improved, I don’t experience bloating anymore and my overall shape is much better than when I started. In all this time, I’ve lost more than 25 pounds without even noticing.
For me, this is the definite proof that the alkaline diet works. It really gives results and, best of all, these results are preserved on a the long term.
Probable Causes of Sleepiness
Unless you have a health condition, feeling sleepy after lunch can have one or more of the following causes:
You’ve simply eaten too much food. No matter how healthy you are, foods have to be digested which, in turn, requires energy.
You’ve combined incompatible foods. Food combining alone can have a major importance for your energy and digestive problems.
The foods were packed with calories and had little nutritional value. A typical example is fast foods. They are also full of salt, sugar, flavor enhancers, preservatives and colorants. The digestive system has to work hard to break them down, therefore it requires much more energy than it gets from them.
Foods rich in carbohydrates, such as pasta, potatoes, rice or sugary foods, trigger a rapid rise in the insulin levels, which also activates the serotonin production. Because serotonin is associated with sleep, it causes you to feel drowsy.
You didn’t eat enough vegetables (if any). Raw vegetables contain active enzymes which support digestion, thus lowering the energy requirements.
Drinking water, juice or other beverages while eating or immediately afterwards slows down digestion, which results in undigested foods.
There can be other causes as well, but these are the most common ones.
It’s Time to Stop Feeling Sleepy After Lunch
Since everyone is different, you should take a step back and analyze your meals. Get the food combining chart and see if you’re making mistakes when combining the foods. For example, meat doesn’t combine well with carbohydrates (potatoes) – yet, what is the favorite food of America?
In order to find out what’s working for you, stick with a 2-3 weeks’ testing periods. During that time, try one of these alternatives:
Eat only vegetable salads at lunch (without meat or cheese). If you find yourself feeling hungry soon, add seeds (flax, pumpkin or sunflower seeds), an avocado or 10-15 olives for their content of healthy fats. If you’re still feeling hungry, wait at least one hour after eating and get some fruits.
Stick only to fruits for lunch. My personal choice is 1 grapefruit, 1-2 oranges, 1 kiwi and 1 avocado. You can essentially play with any combination you want as long as you follow the food combining rules. The avocado is a fat fruit which slows down the sugar metabolism, maintaining the energy levels up for longer.
Always pay attention to how you combine the foods.
I have tried both these approaches and they work miracles. I used the second recipe to heal myself from a cold in just 1 day. Although I added other foods during the day, the overall approach worked very well.
Now I have more energy after lunch and many of my non-vegan friends wonder how come I’m not sleepy anymore like they are. Eating only salads or fruits for lunch is also a great conversation starter, as many will stop by and ask where I get my proteins from. If they’re past the protein question, they usually shake their heads, saying that it’s so tough to eat only vegetables and wondering how sad my life is, devoid of all those food goodies.
If you’re just approaching the alkaline diet and still want some animal products in your diet, just stick to the food combining rules, reducing the animal products intake. It’s always better to eat a steak along with a big green salad full of enzymes and nutrients than along with rice or potatoes.
Since nobody’s alike, it is just a matter of experimenting. Find out what works best for you and just apply it. Your body will thank you.