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Which helps against the midday low
Who does not know that: around noon, the ability to concentrate and perform decreases, fatigue spreads. In addition, mistakes happen faster at work than usual. Experts explain what helps against the so-called midday low.
In the morning and in the morning the drive was still great - and already in the early afternoon the eyes close again. A nap can make sense, but is not always possible. But there are some alternatives.
No reason to worry
Immediately after the canteen schnitzel or only in the afternoon: At some point, the infamous deadlock comes at many people. Leaden fatigue then makes the eyelids sag.
First of all, there is no need to worry: "It is completely normal for the performance curve in humans to drop after every 90 minutes of activity and concentration," explains sleep researcher Jürgen Zulley, professor of biological psychology at the University of Regensburg.
In other words: there must be a break after each performance phase - otherwise fatigue strikes at some point. But what if she doesn't want to leave despite regular breaks? Then there are various tips and tricks that bring new energy in the long term or at very short notice.
Tip 1: More light
"A reason for daytime sleepiness can be a lack of light," says Zulley. Even if the brightness in closed rooms is subjectively perceived as sufficient, it may be that the light intensity is not objectively high enough. A lack of light means that the body cannot produce enough of the mood-enhancing messenger serotonin. What helps: Get brighter lamps or regularly expose yourself to daylight - at least during the lunch break.
Tip 2: take a nap
If you are tired at noon, close your eyes briefly. The so-called power nap can also help to overcome a daily low, says Ursula Sellerberg of the Federal Chamber of Pharmacists. However, sleep researcher Hans-Günter Weess restricts it shouldn't be a proper afternoon nap. Specifically, this means: no longer than 20 minutes - and not after 3 p.m.
Tip 3: Switch off briefly
A short nap is often hardly possible, especially for working people. But it doesn't have to be lying down properly. Switch off briefly at work, look relaxed out of the window and ponder the thought: Sometimes it is enough to get fit again. "But this effect is not possible if you keep sitting on the PC and playing games there," explains Zulley.
Tip 4: More coffee
Caffeine wakes you up. The combination of caffeine and sugar in cola - or in sugared coffee - is even invigorating, at least in theory and in the short term. "Four to five cups of coffee per day or up to 400 milliliters of caffeine are harmless and can be easily drunk," says Sellerberg.
Tip 5: Don't eat too little
If you don't eat and drink enough, you risk unwanted fatigue attacks. “Drinking two liters of liquid a day is ideal,” said Zulley. Unless it's about the caffeine effect of coffee or cola, water and unsweetened teas are the means of choice. "Sudden fatigue can also be a sign of hypoglycaemia," says Sellerberg. A small snack can then bring back the spirits.
Tip 6: keep moving
Get out into the fresh air and take a little walk: this stimulates and dispels tiredness. And who - for whatever reason - does not want to go out can also move sensibly indoors. “Doing some gymnastics at work or going to a colleague within the company and discussing something with him instead of calling or emailing,” explains Zulley.
Tip 7: essential oils
A quick sniff at a bottle of peppermint or lemon oil - this alone can sometimes be invigorating. "You can also put a few drops of essential oils in a bowl of water and inhale this mixture," says Sellerberg. However, she advises against applying essential oils to the skin. This could lead to skin irritation.
Tip 8: Take herbal extracts
Extracts from various medicinal plants - from ginseng, taiga root, rose root or soy lecithin, for example - may also help against persistent fatigue and weakness. But be careful: the duration of use is limited, for example two months for the taiga root, three for ginseng. Interested parties should seek advice from their doctor or from a pharmacy. (ad; source: dpa / tmn)