Can Skipping Meals Make You Tired?

If you have a busy schedule at work or school, you may find yourself accidentally skipping meals. While skipping a meal once or twice isn't that big of a deal, you shouldn't make a habit of it. That's because skipping meals can affect your energy levels. According to SELF, going without food can cause your blood sugar to drop.

"The main fuel for your brain is glucose, which you get from eating foods — predominantly carb-rich ones," said Dr. Rachele Pojednic, an assistant professor in the nutrition department at Simmons College and professor at the Harvard Extension School (via SELF).

Low blood sugar can deplete your energy levels, causing fatigue and sluggishness. It can also make you feel weak, irritable, and shaky. In addition, skipping meals can make it harder to stick to a healthy and well-balanced diet. If you wait until you're ravenous, you're more likely to eat whatever is most readily available. It's also not uncommon to crave carbohydrates and sugary foods when you're incredibly hungry since they would ultimately raise your blood sugar.

Don't skip meals

That's why it's important to make sure you eat three square meals every day. Although this can be difficult when you have a busy schedule, meal planning can help with your time management (via Prevention). For instance, you can make a nutritious lunch or breakfast the night before so you can eat it the next day. If you're still too busy to stop and eat, however, you can drink a meal replacement shake.

Since many shakes don't contain enough fiber or protein, you might need to drink it alongside a high-protein snack, like a banana with peanut butter. Just make sure you're getting enough protein and calories. On average, you should consume around 325 to 400 calories per meal and 15 to 25 grams of protein. It can also be helpful to have a few snacks on hand to eat when you're on the go. Some quick and healthy snack foods include yogurt, almonds, fruit, and low-sugar protein bars.