Fight the Fatigue!

Happy Hump Day! 

As you’re reading this, you might, like me, be experiencing the INFAMOUS afternoon slump. BLAH! This is a typical, daily occurence that we have all just kind of gotten used to. By the time 4pm rolls around & I know I only have ONE more hour left of work- the slump somehow seems to happily disappear. (although on Mondays I think my slump stays with me ALL day 😉 ) 

ohhhh the slump

 

I have often wondered what the best anti-slump foods are. I know people recommend staying away from pasta & other super carb-dense foods, which I agree with, but I also think that avoiding a SUPER huge lunch is also important. The fuller I get, the sleepier I get as well. So that is why you will find me pretty much everyday having a yogurt mess. It’s light, it fills me up- but not too much- and I feel good after eating them. None of that super stuffed feeling after- yuck! 

you know, like this guy 😉

 

While browsing ‘Fit Sugar’ today I discovered an article on “Foods to Fight Fatigue”

1. Water

Two-thirds of your body is made up of water, and many basic body functions rely upon this simple substance to run smoothly. So it comes as no surprise that fatigue is the top sign of dehydration

2. Magnesium Rich Foods

The unsung mineral hero, magnesium is vital to energy production. It is rare to be low in the mineral, but a little extra dose of magnesium can give you a much-needed boost. Nuts & Seeds are both high in the mineral, as are leafy greens like chard and spinach. 

3. Inulin

I have seen inulin on many an ingredient list, from energy bars to oatmeal. Yet this special type of fiber occurs naturally in wheat, garlic, onions, and Jerusalem artichokes (aka sunchokes). This form of fiber not only helps you feel fuller for longer and helps keep you regular (dealing with constipation can reduce your energy), it helps the body absorb iron to help battle anemia

4. Whole Grains

Carbs feed the brain, but when you fuel your gray matter with complex carbohydrates, you get a slow burn of sustained energy. By helping to maintain your blood sugar levels, these carbs keep your mood steady and eventually will help you sleep later on. You can also find complex carbs in foods like sweet potatoes, as well as whole grains like oatmeal. DON’T SKIP BREAKFAST!! 

5. Lean Protein

Fatty foods, like burgers, take a lot of energy to digest and can leave you feeling sated but zapped of energy. Choose lean proteins over those high in saturated fat. Protein is the building block of muscles

I also am a STRONG believer in coffee- haha 😀
 

So I’ve been thinking a lot the last couple of days about my lack of hunger..and honestly I think I know the source. Yes, I have days where I am honestly NOT hungry, but lately my Crohn’s disease has been acting up. 😦
One of the side effects of the disease is a nauseous feeling- which is how I feel…ALOT. Each time I eat I honestly feel like I’m going to get sick, or I have to head to the bathroom ASAP. (sorry to be gross) But it has just not been cooperating with me at all. Uhh!

GOOD news though: My insurance starts September 1st! WOOP WOOP! So, I’ll be making an appointment with my doctor as soon as I can- I know I’ll have to get a colonoscopy, which I am NOT looking forward to ONE bit- I don’t know anyone that does.

It’s just a pain dealing with the side effects of Crohn’s disease sometimes- I was doing really well for awhile, but I think I need different medication or something stronger- since this one isn’t working like it used to, maybe my body has just gotten used to it?? 

Craig has been really worried about me, even though I assure him not to worry. He just asked me what I ate yesterday & he was NOT happy one bit about what I said- but honestly, I really couldn’t eat- I just felt soooooo nauseous all day. blah! I try to explain to him the feelings I get, but he just tells me to please eat…but then I tell him that I try, because I really do.

I just cannot wait to resolve all of these stomach/ insides issues! 

 Another thing- maybe someone out there can relate: Mr. Craig, whom I love dearly & would do anything for, is EXTREMELY concerned about me drinking protein shakes- especially since I have been drinking one at night before bed. He is ok with the one before breakfast (if I workout in the morning) but he just gives me ‘the look’ if I have another one at night. I try to reassure him that it really is good for me, but I think he thinks that I’m trying to turn into he-woman or something like that…which is NOT the case one bit! He tells me that I should just eat more at dinner & not have the protein shake at night. I really just think that he tells me that, because like I said, he thinks I will turn into Arnold.

me, after a protein shake, hot stuff, huh?! jk 🙂

Any advice? Have you encountered something similar? I need some blog world help 😀

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10 Comments

  1. Hey girl – sorry the symptoms are flaring up right now. Hopefully once you get to the doctor you can get some solid advice. I used to have the afternoon slump, but since I changed my eating habits, I rarely get sleepy now. I think it’s important to not let yourself get so hungry that you gorge at lunch. It’s also important to pay attention to the types of foods – like the glycemic levels. And you will NOT end up like Arnold for drinking the shakes LOL. Maybe you need to do an inventory of the amount or protein you’re getting throughout the day though? You may not need the extra. I have read all sorts of recommended amts. But roughly for more serious lifting they suggest anywhere from 1.2-1.8 x your weight. I think the 1.8 is pretty extreme.

    Reply
  2. I can’t imagine not ever feeling hungry so I really have no advice for you.

    As far as the protein shakes—protein in whey form is the same as protein in other forms. They do say it’s better to get your protein from REAL food sources and not whey—whey is just good in a pinch.

    I think 1 lb of protein per day is PLENTY.

    Reply
  3. Calories are calories at the end of the day.
    But I think its important to get food from REAL food versus powders (powders can fine and all on occasion, but I doubt highly they are necessary all the time). Real food is always best.

    Reply
  4. my husband has crohn’s so i know what you have to deal with all too well. not me personally, but since i am always with him i understand how it controls your life AND what you eat. he usually only eats once a day because it’s so painful. i wish he would go to the doc! but he is stubborn. anyway, just thought i’d share that. have a great day 🙂

    Reply
  5. I’m a BIG believer in coffee too, but if it’s hot outside and I find myself in an energy slump, a green monster usually does the trick! 🙂

    Reply
  6. breakfast is so essential when the heat gets to people. at least by filling up on a good breakfast u’ll be set for any fatigue and exhaustion or lack of appetite etc. i find that when its hot i get super hungry in the cooler mornings but by the end of the day im to drained to want to cook or even feel very hungry. these are fabulous tips ❤ thanks for posting them for us!! 🙂

    Reply
  7. Liz

     /  August 26, 2010

    I’m a long time reader (love your blog!) but never commented until now! 🙂 (Let me preface my thoughts for you by saying that I have been a strength and conditioning coach for college athletes for the last 4 years, personal trainer for a health club and in the process of co-authoring a nutrition book… so I’m not pullin’ stuff outta nowhere 😉 ) As for the protein shakes before bed, the only way you would end up as “he-man” is if you were to lift for 3 hours a day. People associate drinking protein shakes with blowing up like a bodybuilder only because bodybuilders use it as the quickest way to get protein pumped to their muscles right after a workout. (They use it other times too, but that’s one of the more influential examples) If a bodybuilder were to eat a piece of chicken right after a workout, by the time their body starts to break it down in order for it to go to their muscles, their muscles will already be rapidly breaking down too much and won’t gain the benefits of a hard lifting workout PLUS proper replenishment right away. Liquids (Protein shakes!) get into your system right away because you’re not spending all of that time digesting. People think the more protein shakes you drink, the bigger your muscles magically get. But you’re muscles can only get bigger if you tear them down and rebuild them…. ie LIFTING.HEAVY.WEIGHTS. 🙂 I actually think for you as someone who works out as often and as hard as you do, protein shakes are good before bed, but I also think you could substitute some whole foods too. (Cottage cheese, greek yogurt, turkey slices, nut butters, etc.) While you’re sleeping and recovering, your body will probably beneficially utilize that protein it is getting to repair itself. Proper nutrition is key when you’re wanting to look and feel good. My other disclaimer is that this field is constantly changing, so everyone has their opinions on what you should and shouldn’t do. This is just where I come from based on my experiences. Plus I love this stuff! If I can help in any other way, let me know! 🙂

    Reply
  8. I still need to look into this “protein before bed thing” but I agree with others who have said that real food is best and powders/bars should be a limited thing. I don’t think you’ll turn into Arnold though!

    Reply
  9. Protein is beneficial before bed because it helps your body repair the muscle fibers used during a workout. It won’t bulk you up if your overall calories aren’t crazy high. Tell him not to worry. 😉

    And my slump always hits at around 2 or 3…right at the tail end of baby M’s nap.

    Reply

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