Yawning in the afternoon? Learn how to fight daytime sleepiness

Yawning in the afternoon? Learn how to fight daytime sleepiness
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Feeling sluggish while the sun is up? Try these tricks.

1. Avoid "energy" drinks

Colas, energy drinks, and other sodas may not give you that energy boost you're looking for.

In fact, research by the University of Loughborough in the UK found that those who consumed these low caffeine high sugar drinks actually became drowsier and less focused after an hour.

2. Don't over-eat

You skipped the turkey sub at lunch because it contains tryptophan, which you heard can make you sleepy.

Actually, this well-known amino acid is also present in other foods like fish, eggs, yogurt, and cheese - even soya beans contain more tryptophan than turkey.

However, the compound's lethargy-inducing effects may be over-exaggerated, shares Kim Sasso, a registered dietitian at Loyola University Health System in the US.

The way the tryptophan breaks down in our bodies means not enough may reach our brain to have an effect.

What's more likely to cause sleepiness is bingeing on large quantities of food, including carb and sugar-laden treats.

3. Do some exercise

Most people skip their workouts if they feel tired at the end of the day, but just 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise in a week can help you feel more alert in your daily dealings.

It could also get you more restful sleep at night, shares a report from the Oregon State University in the US.

4. Be wary of fatty foods

Studying a group of almost 2,000 men, researchers from the University of Adelaide in Australia discovered that those who indulged in greasy, fried foods were likelier to experience daytime sleepiness.

Fatty cuisines tended to be linked to higher incidences of sleep apnea, leading to disrupted snooze time and cravings for more high-carb and high-fat food!

5. Put away your phone

A recent report in PLOS ONE shared that smartphone use could reduce your quality of sleep, especially when used around bedtime.

In the study, 653 participants self-reported how well they slept, while a downloaded app tabulated their mobile usage duration.

It seems the longer participants spent on their phones, the shorter and poorer their snooze sessions tended to be. Perhaps it's time to seriously consider banning mobile devices in the bedroom.

Shape, the only women's health & fitness magazine in Singapore is now available in both print and digital formats. Log on to www.shape.com.sg to subscribe!

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