Have you ever found yourself waking up in the morning with tons of energy, bubbling with creativity and great ideas for the day? You probably got up, had some coffee, got you and your family dressed, then went off to work. On your lunch break you probably even wrote out your to-do list for the evening, along with a shopping list to buy groceries after work, all while you downed the leftovers from last night’s dinner. All was good with the world. Then it hit. A few hours after lunch, you found yourself in the middle of the mid-afternoon slump. For some people, the mid-afternoon slump is a daily thing.
First, you need to understand why this is happening. Generally, it is because you had a very starchy, sugary, carb-laden meal for breakfast and lunch. Your body uses these carbs for energy to fuel your day. The carbs you consumed create this spike of energy, but then suddenly it plummets, and the mid-afternoon slumps hit you. This daily roller coaster is so frustrating because every single day you have good intentions to defeat the dreaded slump. You have tried so many things to beat the mid-afternoon slump, but nothing seems to help.
Modifying your diet may be the solution. Because the mid-afternoon slump is caused by food for most people, changing your diet can help stabilize your energy levels. Instead of having a roller coaster ride of energy highs and lows, diet changes can help you keep your energy levels even throughout the day. We know this is possible with the keto diet because many people who practice the keto diet don’t experience that slump.
When the basis of your mid-afternoon slump is your diet, the changes seem effortless on the outside. Avoid carb loading during breakfast and lunch, and you can avoid the slump. For many people, those are the results. However, for some people, it can take many weeks of eating a low-carb diet before they start to see the effects on their energy levels. However, there are some things you can do in the meantime to help you with that mid-afternoon slump.
BHBs are a type of exogenous ketone; exogenous ketones help kickstart ketosis. When we’re dealing with the mid-afternoon slump, BHBs can help provide energy to keep you from feeling as tired during the afternoon. Taking BHBs as part of your morning routine, or after your first meal if you are Intermittent Fasting, can supercharge the rest of your day. Another great way to take BHBs is as a pre-workout drink, or as a mid-morning and/or mid-afternoon energy drink. They support keto but can be used by non-keto-ers too, as this is an electrolyte drink as well.
Staying hydrated is vital to many of our bodily functions. For many people just starting on keto, electrolyte depletion is a huge issue. Usually, new keto-ers are drinking more water and eating less processed foods. This can cause your sodium levels to tank, which then makes your electrolytes become unbalanced. It’s essential that you supplement your ketogenic diet with electrolytes. For some, a swig of pickle juice does the deed. Bone broth, Powerade Zero, or coconut water can also help maintain your electrolytes and keep your energy levels high.
If you’re a member of my Keto Support Group, then you’re well aware of my love for fatty coffee. The baristas at my local Starbucks know that I’m going to order butter in my coffee. Unfortunately they do not offer MCT Oil, so I bring my Organic MCT Oil Capsules with me. I’ve found that fatty coffee in the morning is one of the best ways to make sure that I feel energetic all day long. Some people find that they benefit from an extra bulletproof coffee in the early afternoon. Just be aware that indulging too late in the day can impact your sleep patterns.
Exercise is essential. Get up and get moving! You should try for at least thirty minutes every day, five days per week. It doesn’t have to be strenuous exercise. You can do something like going on a walk during your lunch break or HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) first thing in the morning. Make it something you will enjoy and stick to consistently. The point is just to make sure you are moving daily. If your job involves sitting all day, take a brisk walk for ten minutes during your lunch break, then get up and walk around as you switch tasks. Some people use a Pomodoro timer, which sets intervals of twenty-five and five minutes; they work during the twenty-five minutes and walk during the five-minute break.
Most of us aren’t getting enough sleep at our baseline. Starting keto can make sleep deprivation even worse. When a friend first started keto, she found herself so tired that she would fall asleep on the couch at 7:00 p.m. during the first few weeks. This was likely a combination of electrolyte depletion and the general lack of sleep that most working parents experience. It’s tempting to ignore our body’s need for rest, but when you aren’t getting enough, no supplement or healthy routine will help you beat that mid-afternoon slump! While early evening bedtimes may not be optimal for you, make sure that you are getting a solid six to eight hours of sleep every night.
As you progress through the weeks on the keto diet, you may find yourself needing less help to get through that mid-afternoon slump. This is one of the significant side effects of the ketogenic diet. More energy happens as you become fat adapted. There are, of course, several issues that can make adjusting your energy levels take longer, but know that in time, maintaining your keto diet will help you keep a healthier, more stable energy level.
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You got this!
Leta ~ Intentionally Bare
DISCLAIMER: The information in this blog is for educational and informational purposes only. The content in here is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read or heard here.