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Nutritionist warns coffee could make you more tired and what other foods to watch

Delicious and stimulating, coffee is a morning staple for many. Some people can’t even start their day without brewing a fresh cup of the black stuff.

However, coffee lovers are now being warned their favourite brew could actually be leaving them tired. While this might sound confusing as you tend to reach for the stuff to wake you up, Ashleigh Tosh, a nutrition expert at Prepped Pots has explained why this could occur.

Tosh said: “A lot of us love our morning coffee fix to help wake us up and there’s nothing wrong with that. 

“However, consuming too much can have the complete opposite effect, leading to a caffeine crash which leaves us feeling tired and in need of more coffee to fix the problem.

“This caffeine crash can be worse if you enjoy your coffee with added sugar. To avoid this go easy on the sugar and stick to the recommended daily amount of caffeine of 400mg. That’s around four cups of tea or coffee which is plenty to get you through the day.”

And it’s not just coffee. The nutritionist explained that other stimulating products like energy bars and smoothies could also spell bad news for your energy levels.

She said: “Many people rely on coffee, smoothies and energy bars to get them through the day but consuming too much of the wrong products can leave us feeling even more fatigued.

“Most store-bought smoothies and energy bars contain sweeteners and added sugars while lacking sources of protein and fibre which are essential for keeping our energy levels up.

“There are other foods that can contribute to fatigue as well such as white bread and pasta.”

The expert revealed the full list of surprising foods that could be major fatigue triggers.


Despite being a great healthy snack, overindulging on nuts can have the opposite effect as the high levels of healthy fats could end up promoting tiredness. Tosh said: “Stick to the recommended serving of 30 grams per day, this is around one small cupped handful.”

2.Fruit smoothies

While they are rich in vitamins, store-bought smoothies are often loaded with sugars, while lacking fibre and protein to keep your energy levels up. “For better alternatives consider making your own smoothie at home and don’t forget to add a source of protein or healthy fat like nut butter,” the expert said.

3.Energy bars

Contrary to the name, energy bars can lead to an energy crash due to their high sugar content and added sweeteners, Tosh warned. She added: “When buying energy bars look for one with a short ingredients list. The less there is the better. Also, look out for their protein and fibre content.”

4.White bread

Perhaps the least surprising, refined carbs like white bread, bagels and pasta are digested quicker than complex carbs, leaving your body likely to experience a short and quick spike in blood sugar levels before crashing. Tosh said: “This is similar to what happens when we eat too much sugar. To avoid this, try and opt for whole grain options instead.”

The expert advised taking caution when purchasing energy-boosting products and encouraged people to look further into ingredient lists, making sure they contain everything needed for long-lasting energy.  

However, this doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the foods outlined above. Tosh said: “It’s all about making better choices. 

“Swap your bread and pasta for whole grain alternatives and when buying things like energy bars and smoothies, take a good look at their ingredients list and what’s in them.”


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