Recent Posts

Jan 8, 2010

Why do you feel sleepy after eating?

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 people fall asleep naturally at night.

Many meals contain the L-tryptophan. This essential (cannot be made in the body) amino acid needs to be taken on an empty stomach and without any other amino acids or protein in order to make you drowsy.

Some people think, however, that feeling drowsy is not necessarily due to this tryptophan. Tracy Gensler, a registered dietitian in Chevy Chase, U.S.A, says tryptophan does not deserve nearly the blame it gets for making us sleepy. "The body wants to focus its efforts on digestion," Ms. Gensler says. "Drowsiness occurs after any big meal, regardless of the meal components. Digestion of any large meal, whether it's a high-protein, a high-fat or a high-carbohydrate meal, causes the familiar after-meal drowsiness."


Post a Comment