Read this if you Find It Hard to Keep Your Eyes Open After Meals. Too much of this macronutrient in your diet may cause extreme drowsiness.
If you find yourself dozing during the day, your plate may hold the answer: Eating a high-fat diet can make you sleepy, according to new Australian research.
In the study, people who ate 135 grams of fat per day were 78 percent more likely to suffer excessive daytime sleepiness than people who ate just 58 grams per day.
You can rack up that amount by eating a sausage, egg, and cheese biscuit for breakfast, a bacon cheeseburger with fries for lunch, chicken parmesan for dinner, and a brownie for dessert.
Eat a diet like this long enough, and the fat overload can cause your gut to produce neurohormones that make your brain react more slowly, says lead study author Yingting Cao, Ph.D.(c).
This makes you feel sluggish and fatigued after eating it, she says.
All that fat can screw with your sleep later that night, too, which contributes to your sleepiness the next day.
That’s because it may raise your risk of severe sleep apnea, a condition where you stop breathing more than 20 times while asleep. This briefly wakes you from sleep, which prevents you from entering the deep, restorative REM stage.
In fact, people who ate the most fat were also three times as likely as the lower-fat eaters to develop that condition.
Some fats might be more likely than others to cause sleep issues. Saturated and trans fats are thought to have an inflammatory effect, and chronic inflammation is associated with sleep apnea, Cao explains.
If you’ve been feeling sleepy during the day—and you’re logging at least 7 hours of sleep a night—you can try scaling back on your intake of those kinds of fat to see if your symptoms improve, she says.
Shoot for half a gram of fat daily for every pound of your desired body weight.
And focus your fats on heart-healthy types like monounsaturated fats—found in olives, avocadoes and nuts—and omega-3s, like in salmon.