Eating too Much and Sleeping – What’s the Connection? - Pathway Genomics
Pathway Genomics is proud to celebrate 10 successful years as a CLIA and CAP accredited clinical laboratory!

Eating too Much and Sleeping – What’s the Connection?

There are many of us who feel sleepy after eating. They feel tired and can immediately fall off to sleep; all they need is a couch. This is a natural phenomenon that is a result of a number of factors. If you also fall in the same category and wondering what is wrong with you, take a look at the following factors.

1. Diet

They say you are what you eat. Your body, the internal systems and the hormones will all work in accordance with your diet. According to some scientific studies, if there is an increased level of insulin in the body (in response to the amount of sugar you have eaten), tryptophan is released which travels to the brain. It is metabolized in the brain as melatonin and serotonin. Both these hormones work together to create a soothing and calming effect on your mind and body, leading to sleep. Your drowsy state of mind after eating food is most likely because of these three hormones and their collective action.

2. Digestion

Tiredness after eating too much food can be a result of the way food is digested in your body. When food is metabolized in your body, it is converted to energy in the form of glucose. Hormones are released as soon as glucose enters your bloodstream. If there is an increase of glucose, insulin is released but in addition to insulin, other hormones such as serotonin are also released into the bloodstream which causes a feeling of drowsiness.

3. Your Sleeping Patterns

Maybe it is not the food but your general sleeping habits and schedule which makes you sleepy after having food. People normally rest after eating to let their bodies digest the food they have eaten. If you always drift off to sleep whenever you rest after having food, it is quite likely that your sleeping schedule and patterns need attention. If you are not getting ample amount of sleep, you will feel sleepy every now and then and the urge to sleep increases after having food.

4. Physical Activity

Your level of alertness depends on the amount of physical activity you do in a day. Working out regularly is important to have a good night’s sleep. You will not feel sleepy if you have had enough sleep the last night. Don’t remain glued to the screens and step outdoors. Work out and you will fall asleep when you lie in bed at night and will not feel sleepy the next day after every meal.

Feeling sleepy after having food is a perfectly normal and natural response of the body. Your body needs some time to digest food before getting on with the activities of life again. However, if it is being a problem, you should work on your physical activities and sleeping patterns and schedule.