10 Foods That Make You Feel Tired

Last Updated on Feb 28, 2024 by HappyDieter

Ever felt sluggish after a meal? Certain foods might be the culprit. From sugary treats to fructose corn syrup, some foods can zap your energy levels quicker than you can say “nap time.” Here are some foods that make you feel tired: In this listicle, we’ll uncover the top culprits that leave you feeling more tired than wired.

Prepare for some eye-opening revelations as we delve into the sneaky suspects lurking in your pantry and fridge, including processed foods. Curious to know which everyday items could be sapping your vitality and brain energy? Stay tuned as we reveal these fatigue-inducing foods beans, and tryptophan one by one below!

Key Takeaways

  • Avoid consuming white bread and simple sugars as they can contribute to feelings of tiredness due to their quick energy spike followed by a crash.

  • Limit the intake of red meat, cheese, and milk, as these foods are heavy and can lead to sluggishness.

  • Incorporate cherries into your diet as they contain melatonin, a hormone that helps regulate sleep, potentially aiding in improving your energy levels.

  • Moderation is key when consuming red wine and coffee, as excessive amounts can disrupt your sleep patterns and leave you feeling fatigued.

  • Consider chamomile tea or passionfruit tea as alternatives to coffee for a more calming and soothing effect on the brain to promote better sleep quality.

  • Opt for oatmeal and lettuce in your meals for sustained energy release and to avoid the energy crashes associated with refined carbohydrates.

1. White bread

The high glycemic index of white bread can cause rapid spikes in blood sugar levels, leading to a quick burst of energy followed by a crash. This crash occurs because white bread lacks essential nutrients and fiber found in whole grains.

Consuming white bread regularly can result in energy crashes and fatigue due to its inability to sustain stable blood sugar levels throughout the day. Opting for whole foods like whole grain bread provides more sustained energy as they release glucose into the bloodstream at a slower rate.

By choosing whole grains over white bread, you benefit from increased fiber content that aids digestion and helps maintain steady energy levels. Whole grains also offer additional nutrients such as B vitamins, iron, and magnesium which are crucial for overall health and combating fatigue.

Making simple switches in your diet, like replacing white bread with whole grain options, can significantly impact your energy levels throughout the day while providing essential nutrients that promote overall well-being.

2. Red meat

Red meat can contribute to feelings of tiredness for several reasons:

  • High in Saturated Fats: These fats can slow down digestion, making you feel sluggish after a meal.

  • Amino Acids: Certain amino acids found in red meat, like tryptophan, can promote sleepiness by aiding in the production of serotonin and melatonin.

  • Digestive Energy: The body requires more energy to digest red meat compared to other foods, potentially leading to fatigue post-meal.

For those looking to combat fatigue or reduce the impact of red meat on energy levels, balancing meals with lighter options like leafy greens or whole grains can help maintain steady energy throughout the day. Incorporating leaner protein sources such as poultry or fish may offer a similar nutritional profile without the potential heaviness associated with red meats.

Remember that moderation is key; enjoying red meat occasionally as part of a balanced diet should not significantly impact overall energy levels but could provide essential nutrients like iron and zinc beneficial for health.

3. Cherries

Cherries are a natural source of melatonin, the hormone responsible for regulating sleep-wake cycles. By consuming cherries, you can potentially enhance your sleep quality and combat insomnia effectively. These fruits contain antioxidants that play a vital role in reducing inflammation and combating fatigue.

Research has shown that individuals who consumed cherry juice experienced improvements in their sleep duration and quality. The melatonin content in cherries contributes to resetting the body’s internal clock, aiding in falling asleep more easily and achieving better rest throughout the night.

Moreover, the antioxidants found in cherries help reduce oxidative stress on the body, which is often linked to feelings of tiredness and fatigue. These compounds work to support overall wellness by combating inflammation within the body’s systems.

4. Red wine

Alcohol, like that found in red wine, can induce drowsiness due to its sedative effects. This can make you feel tired and ready for sleep after consumption.

The compound resveratrol present in red wine is believed to have potential benefits for regulating sleep patterns. However, it’s essential to consume alcohol moderately as excessive intake can disrupt your normal sleep cycles.

Remember that while a glass of red wine might help you unwind and relax, overindulgence could lead to fragmented or poor-quality sleep. Moderation is key.

5. Coffee

Caffeine in coffee can temporarily boost energy by stimulating the central nervous system. However, excessive consumption may lead to dehydration, causing fatigue as water plays a crucial role in maintaining energy levels.

Regular intake of coffee can result in caffeine dependency. When someone reduces their caffeine intake or stops abruptly, they might experience withdrawal symptoms like headaches and tiredness due to the body’s adaptation to the stimulant. It is important to moderate coffee consumption for overall health and avoid reliance on it for sustained energy levels.

To combat fatigue effectively, consider balancing your coffee intake with adequate hydration from water throughout the day. Incorporating healthy snacks rich in nutrients like fruits and nuts can provide more sustainable energy without relying solely on caffeine boosts.

6. Simple sugars

Simple sugars can have a significant impact on your energy levels:

  • They cause rapid spikes in blood sugar levels, leading to subsequent crashes that leave you feeling tired.

  • Due to their lack of essential nutrients like vitamins and minerals, foods high in simple sugars can contribute to overall feelings of fatigue.

  • Consuming too many simple sugars may increase inflammation and oxidative stress in the body, further exacerbating feelings of tiredness.

7. Chamomile tea and passionfruit tea

Chamomile tea is renowned for its calming properties, aiding in relaxation and promoting better sleep quality. This herbal infusion has been used for centuries as a natural remedy to induce a sense of tranquility before bedtime.

Passionfruit tea, on the other hand, contains flavonoids that are known to reduce anxiety levels and encourage drowsiness. By incorporating passionfruit tea into your evening routine, you can potentially experience improved sleep patterns and reduced restlessness.

Both chamomile and passionfruit teas serve as excellent caffeine-free alternatives for individuals looking to unwind after a long day without the stimulating effects of traditional caffeinated beverages like coffee or black tea. These are not foods which make you feel tired. These soothing teas offer a gentle way to wind down while avoiding the disruptions that caffeine can cause to your sleep cycle.

8. Oatmeal

Oatmeal is a powerhouse breakfast option that can provide long-lasting energy and combat fatigue throughout the day. Here’s why oatmeal can help you stay energized:

  • Complex Carbohydrates: Oatmeal contains complex carbohydrates that are slowly digested, offering a steady release of energy to keep you fueled for hours.

  • B Vitamins: Rich in B vitamins like B1 (thiamine) and B2 (riboflavin), oatmeal supports the conversion of food into energy within your body, helping fight off tiredness.

  • High Fiber Content: With its high fiber content, oatmeal promotes stable blood sugar levels by slowing down digestion. This helps prevent energy crashes often associated with sugary or processed foods.

9. Lettuce

Lettuce, often overlooked, contains lactucarium, a natural sedative that promotes relaxation and sleepiness. This compound can help you wind down after a long day and prepare for restful sleep.

Lettuce is a low-calorie vegetable with a high water content that helps prevent dehydration-related fatigue by keeping you hydrated throughout the day. Staying hydrated is crucial for maintaining energy levels and combating tiredness.

Furthermore, lettuce provides essential vitamins and minerals like vitamin K, which play a vital role in overall energy production within the body. These nutrients are an integral part of your daily diet to ensure optimal functioning throughout the day.

Incorporating lettuce into salads or sandwiches can be an easy way to enjoy its benefits while adding variety to your meals. This is a good strategy to avoid foods that make you feel tired. Consider including it as part of your meals to not only satisfy your taste buds but also boost your energy levels naturally.

10. Cheese and milk

  • Rich in tryptophan, an amino acid crucial for serotonin and melatonin production.

  • Calcium in milk aids muscle relaxation, promoting better sleep quality.

  • Protein content offers sustained energy levels throughout the day.

Cheese and milk are not only delicious but also provide essential nutrients that can impact your energy levels and sleep patterns positively. Tryptophan found in these dairy products plays a vital role in the production of serotonin, known as the “feel-good” hormone, which helps regulate mood and promote relaxation before bedtime.

Calcium present in milk contributes to muscle relaxation, aiding in falling asleep faster and experiencing more restful sleep cycles. This mineral is essential for maintaining healthy bones as well. Moreover, the protein content from cheese and milk serves as a slow-release energy source that keeps you feeling full longer while providing a steady stream of fuel for your daily activities.

Incorporating moderate amounts of cheese or milk into your diet can be beneficial for both your overall well-being and energy levels throughout the day. However, it’s important to note that these are also some of the foods that make you feel tired if consumed in large quantities. So next time you reach for a snack or plan a meal, consider including some cheese or milk to support your body’s needs effectively but remember to do so in moderation.


You’ve now uncovered a range of foods that make you feel tired without even realizing it. From white bread to red meat, simple sugars to cheese and milk, these culprits might be sneaking their way into your daily diet and zapping your energy levels. By being mindful of what you consume, you can take control of your energy and vitality.

Make a conscious effort to swap out these energy-draining foods for healthier alternatives. Opt for whole grains, lean proteins, and nutrient-rich options to fuel your body and keep you feeling energized throughout the day. Here’s a tip related to foods that make you feel tired: Your food choices play a significant role in how you feel, so why not make choices that support your well-being and vitality? Start today and notice the difference it can make in your overall energy levels and productivity.


Can white bread make you feel tired?

Yes, white bread can make you feel tired because it has a high glycemic index, causing a rapid spike and drop in blood sugar levels, leading to fatigue.

Is red meat linked to feeling tired?

Red meat contains high levels of saturated fats that require more energy for digestion, potentially making you feel sluggish or tired after consumption.

How do cherries affect your energy levels?

Cherries contain melatonin which can regulate sleep patterns. Eating them may help improve the quality of your sleep and subsequently contribute to reducing feelings of fatigue during the day.

Does coffee make you feel more tired later on?

While coffee provides an initial boost due to caffeine, excessive consumption can lead to dehydration and disrupt sleep patterns, resulting in increased fatigue over time.

Can oatmeal help combat feelings of tiredness?

Oatmeal is a complex carbohydrate that releases energy slowly throughout the day. Consuming oatmeal can provide sustained energy levels and prevent sudden crashes that cause fatigue.