You check your watch thinking the day is nearly over and you realise that it's only just gone 3pm; the slump hits you hard. We can all relate. Late-afternoon coffee is not your friend unless you're planning a late one, so ditch the espresso and check these 6 hacks to keep your energy levels pumping. 

1. Get off the blood sugar roller coaster

A blood sugar high always results in a blood sugar crash. This crash is the number one cause of the afternoon energy slump and can stimulate cravings for another sugary ‘quick fix’.

Protein is the hero to keep blood sugar levels stable.

Eat more lean meats, fish, eggs, yoghurt, nuts, seeds, tofu, tempeh, beans & pulses.

3. Get on the green tea hype

Green tea contains a special substance called L-Theanine, which has shown to stimulate a feeling of relaxed alertness and clarity. This is a great way to give you an afternoon energy boost without the worry of staying up all night.

5. Load up on B vitamins

If you are lacking in energy you may also be lacking in B vitamins.

Eat more protein such as fish, poultry, meat, eggs, and dairy products and leafy green vegetables, beans, and peas.

2. Avoid the food coma

Sometimes afternoon drowsiness can simply be down to eating too much at lunch time. Whilst food is designed to give us energy, digesting a large lunch can take an awful lot of energy. 

Try eating off a smaller plate or splitting your lunch into two meals. A smaller but satisfying meal may be the key preventing that afternoon crash. 

4. Ditch the white carbs and go for whole grains

It’s the additional fibre in whole grains that keeps blood sugar levels stable and prevents energy crashes.

Try instead whole grain bread or pasta, buckwheat, millet, quinoa, amaranth, brown rice, wild rice or oats.

6. Invest in superfoods

Maca is an ancient root vegetable grown high up in the Andes Mountains.

This has long been used for energy, stamina and endurance.

With a mild caramel taste you can add to smoothies, porridge, energy balls, or experiment with maca in your cooking.

Lily Soutter Bsc (Hons) Nutrition, Dip ION, mBANT, CNHC


Lily is a Nutritionist and weight loss expert providing one-to-one nutrition consultations for health optimisation. She has obtained a Food and Human Nutrition degree from Newcastle University and a Nutritional Therapy diploma from The Institute of Optimum Nutrition. Lily's  has an extensive knowledge of the science of food and health, which enables her to regularly write for The Daily Mail, The Independent, The Mirror, Women's Health, Marie Claire, Good Housekeeping and Cosmopolitan.

Check Lily's website here.