Many people experience a significant decrease in energy in the evening, they may even feel listless and discouraged that resembles a sudden depressive state.
If you are one of them, you are not alone. Many people deal with the energy slump in the mid-afternoon and experience a noticeable drop in their alertness, energy level, and ability to concentrate in the afternoon. And if you are an active or sports person who has gotten up early to train before your workday begins, chances are you feel this even more acutely than most. Before seeing how to improve or eradicate this phenomenon, let’s better understand what causes the low energy in the mid-afternoon.
Causes of decreased energy in the afternoon
There are six main causes of this mid-afternoon power drop:
- A natural response to circadian rhythms, which typically make us feel more sleepy from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m. and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
- Getting very little sleep on a regular basis;
- Bad eating habits, such as eating too many carbohydrates (especially at lunch);
- Dehydration or hypohydration: this happens often during a busy day, especially if you had a training session in the morning;
- High levels of stress;
- An underlying metabolic disorder, such as prediabetes or insulin resistance, reactive hypoglycemia, or polycystic ovary syndrome.
How to overcome the low energy in the afternoon
While we can’t do much with our natural circadian rhythm, we can seek to address some of the other issues. The dream, of course, is the obvious one. If you have trouble sleeping, you should try to improve your sleep habit so that it doesn’t affect the rest of the day.
You can read various articles published on our website to try to improve your ability to sleep.
Drinking a hot beverage at the time you experience low energy can help raise your body temperature to counteract some of the effects of the natural circadian rhythm.
This can also help with acute dehydration, but it is best to pay attention to your hydration status during the day, as a lack of hydration has various negative effects on the body and overall performance.
It is highly recommended that we make sure we have enough water and fluids on our desk during work hours and daily activities, especially if you have been exercising in the morning. You will be surprised at the positive impact this can have in helping you get through the dreaded afternoon power drop.
Movement and sun exposure also help prevent power dips in the afternoon; A short walk outside can be enough to ease drowsiness and raise your core temperature, helping you perform much better for the rest of the day.