Notice that you’re always tired after lunch time? It probably has to do with the foods you’ve chosen. The food we eat plays a big role in our energy levels, which is why experts recommend eating protein-rich meals that are high in fiber to help keep your metabolism and blood sugar at a steady rate. This is especially true when it comes to the snacks we eat during the middle of the day.
It’s best to steer clear of simple carbohydrates when choosing your midday snack because they often leave you feeling fatigued and hungry. “Carbs are the body’s preferred source of energy and can provide the brain with the pick-me-up that it’s looking for,” Maya Feller, RDN, tells Well+Good. “But these are simple carbs that cause your blood sugar to spike and crash, leaving you feeling tired.”
Feller says that there’s one snack in particular that she urges dieters to steer clear of because of its fattening properties–granola bars!
These snacks may seem innocent upfront, but Feller says that they're actually lurking with sugar and unhealthy additives that contribute to weight gain.
“Some are made with oats, sugar, honey, and fruit,” she explains. “Yes, the ingredients are healthy—however the amount used and combination can lead to a glucose spike, followed by a rapid dip.”
Don't think you'll be able to make it through the day without nibbling on a granola bar? Feller says it's best to opt for bars that have 5g of sugar or less per serving to ensure that you're not consuming excess sugar.
She also recommends glancing over the ingredients list to make sure that you recognize what's listed. This will help eliminate any unhealthy additives from your go-to snack.
But really, the best thing you can snack on are fruits and vegetables. Feller suggests packing yourself a sandwich-sized baggie of veggies like cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots, or baby bell peppers to munch on in between meals. Dip them in a protein-rich dip like hummus, plain yogurt, or guacamole and you're all set!