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Are ‘food comas’ real?

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You’ve just finished a big meal, and you can’t even think about more food. You’re deciding if you should take a walk or maybe even a stretch before clearing the table. However the though of getting out of your chair seems like a challenge. The concept of taking a nap in your comfy bed seems more and more tempting. does that sound like an experience you’ve had?  There’s a name for it: It’s called postprandial somnolence mostly referred to as “food coma.” The spectacle refers to the tired, sleepy feeling that many of us experience after eating a big meal. And the causes are based on different theories, some more logical than others.

According to David Levitsky,the professor of nutrition and psychology at Cornell University, the most reasonable explanation for food comas has to do with changes in blood circulation. When food enters your stomach and activates the gastrointestinal tract, “blood flow shifts from the muscles and brain into the stomach and intestines,” he explained. “And when blood volume goes down in the brain, we get woozy and tired. It’s why I have to make my lectures extremely exciting: They’re right after lunch.”  These blood shifts happen because eating a meal activates our parasympathetic nervous system. This is the part of our nervous system that triggers digestion and absorption of food. It’s been titled the “rest and digest system,” because its aim is to conserve energy as it slows heart rate and increases intestinal activity which prepares the body to ingest a meal’s nutrients.

On the contrary, our sympathetic nervous system takes on a completely different role: It’s sparked in response to a threat or danger and induces a “fight or flight”like response, causing increased heart rate and increased blood flow to the brain. You’re not at risk of falling into a food coma if you’re just having a small snack. “It’s got to be a large meal,” Levitsky stated. “The parasympathetic nervous system is activated when you eat, but (the extent to which it induces sleepiness) depends on the magnitude of the meal.” It works with gastric distention (the stretching of the stomach after we eat a large amount of food). So basically he bigger the meal, the more expansion and the greater the effects.
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Are ‘food comas’ real?