We’ve all experienced that overwhelming exhaustion that rolls in around 2 or 3 p.m., and while midday fatigue may be attributed to low blood sugar or missing your morning coffee, it is most likely due to a disruption in your sleep cycle. We often wake up despite still being tired and by midday our core temperatures begin to drop, which is a signal for the brain to release melatonin — the exact process that our body goes through before bed. Many Mediterranean and tropical cultures structure their days around this by incorporating a midday siesta into their daily schedules; in the United States, we’re not quite there yet.
What we eat for breakfast and lunch also contributes to our daily energy levels, and when we’re working an eight-hour shift at the office it’s crucial we remain alert for all of it (all right, at least most of it). Refined carbohydrates such as white bread, bagels, and other breakfast pastries have a high glycemic index and are quickly broken down by the body into sugar. They give a quick spike of sugar — then a crash — rather than a steady stream of energy throughout the day.
To avoid the afternoon slump, you need to stock your desk and office refrigerator with proper snacks that will fuel you through the day. Fruits like apples and bananas are a convenient form of slow releasing carbohydrates, while hard-boiled eggs provide satiating protein and B vitamins — nutrients critical to the conversion of food into energy.
Eat these 17 office snacks, and avoid falling victim to that afternoon slump.