7 Signs Your Diet Is Making You Tired

Updated: Feb. 09, 2017

You'll be shocked at which common eating habits and foods make you sleepy. Here's how to switch to high-energy foods.


You don’t snack

When starting a weight-loss plan, you may want to cut out as many calories as possible; yet Mayo Clinic warns against this tactic. Going more than four hours between meals can leave blood sugar in the basement and you feeling lifeless. A healthy and well-planned diet allows for snacking. Try noshing on fruits and veggies with hearty fiber to fill you up. Here are some healthier snack ideas.


You rely on coffee more and more

Coffee provides you with a morning wake-up call, and maybe an early afternoon pick-me-up. However, if you find yourself reaching for the coffee cup throughout the day, you might be compensating too much. Skipping the afternoon java could also boost your energy, along with these other fatigue-fighting tricks. Before drinking that fourth cup, reevaluate your diet and try to add more energy-rich foods.


You’re avoiding red meat

Before you nix hamburgers entirely, think of what your mom always told you: “Everything in moderation.” Red meat is a great source of iron; without this energizing mineral, your body cannot circulate enough oxygen to fuel your cells. This makes you feel sluggish and tired, according to WebMD. Instead of going cold turkey on red meat, enjoy a nice piece of iron-rich steak or a small burger once or twice a week.


You’ve sworn off all sugar

Yes, sugar is the health villain du jour right now. Yes, you should be conscious of hidden sugar in packaged and frozen foods. And yes, if you are eating too much sugar, take steps to cut back. But be conscious that your body also needs some sugar to function. Avoiding an apple as a snack because it has natural sugar, for example, is a sign of taking diet restrictions too far. Foods like fruit or milk naturally have some sugar—along with a wealth of energizing nutrients.


You’re not eating carbs

Don’t fear carbs. Your body needs grains to function well and not feel sleepy 24/7. The key to a successful diet is a well-rounded source of fiber-rich and complex carbs, according to WebMD. Check out these healthy carbs that nutritionists want you to eat.

iStock/Eva Katalin Kondoros

You skip breakfast

You might be in the habit of grabbing a cup of coffee and running out the door, but if you find yourself feeling sleepy mid-morning or late-afternoon, it’s a good idea to reevaluate your morning eating habits. A protein-packed breakfast helps balance your blood sugar and provides a steady stream of energy throughout the morning. Check out these suggestions for healthy breakfast ideas.

iStock/Jacob Ammetorp Lund

You’re exercising too much

Too much exercise and too few calories can put your body in starvation mode, says livestrong.com. Rather than losing more weight, your body will go into crisis mode. This causes you to store more calories as fat and leaves you feeling like a zombie. Rather than becoming obsessive about burning calories, try to live an active lifestyle and walk as often as you can during your regular day. Here are 16 ways you can lose weight by walking.

Reader's Digest
Originally Published in Reader's Digest