Last night I fell asleep at 8:30 PM. While I found it strange how I would ‘pass out’ at such an early time I happened to know the reason. You see, a couple of hours before I dozed off I had a very large (and pricey) meal which made me sleepy. This has happened before; in fact it happens to me all the time. After a meal when I eat more than I probably should I .. doze off.
What I generally refer to as: “itis” actually has scientific meaning:
Eating sugary foods causes your brain to make large amounts of the neurotransmitter, serotonin, that makes people fall asleep naturally at night.
Eating sugary foods or those made from flour, such as bakery products or pastas, causes blood sugar to rise higher than normal. This causes your pancreas to release large amounts of insulin, which drives one of the protein building blocks called tryptophan from your bloodstream into your brain, where it is converted to serotonin that makes you feel sleepy.
Many people can avoid feeling sleepy after eating by restricting foods that are high in sugar and flour. When it is important for you to be alert, eat foods that do not cause a high rise in blood sugar, such as vegetable salads, nuts, seeds, fish or chicken.
Generally, when you eat a large meal it tends to make you sleepy regardless of what the meal contained. This is because digestive process draw energy from other body functions leaving you with an overall feeling of tiredness. Additionally, Carbohydrates also help out by increasing the production of serotonin.
If you want to avoid falling asleep at 8:30 PM like me, consider telling your family to start this Thanksgiving dinner on the later side. Otherwise, you may even end up falling asleep at the table:
via DR MIRKIN