Why do most people experience drowsiness or lethargy in the afternoon?

The time from one to 4 p.m. is when many people experience strange lethargy and drowsiness and it becomes difficult for them to keep their eyes open.

In such a situation, physical energy feels low, while fatigue can also be felt.

This usually happens after lunch and as a result it becomes difficult to concentrate along with a decrease in physical energy.

But what is the cause of this situation in the afternoon?

In fact, there are not one reason for this.

There is a natural clock inside our body that gives us a feeling of urgency or fatigue during the 24 hours of the day.

That is, there is gradual fatigue for sleep at night, while we are more active during the day, but as a result of this hour, there is a feeling of drowsiness and lethargy during one to 4 pm (this time may be different in each person).

But the physical clock is not the only reason for this, other reasons are as follows.

Decrease in hormone levels

The increase and decrease in the level of a hormone called cortisol causes a feeling of drowsiness in the afternoon while also decreasing physical energy.

Lack of sleep

Sleep deprivation is also the worst in the afternoon drowsiness in people with lack of sleep.

If your sleep duration is not 7 to 9 hours, then there is no need to be surprised at this drowsiness, because as a result of insufficient sleep, it is difficult for our body to stay awake throughout the day.


Blood sugar levels increase if your lunch is high in carbohydrates and sugar.

When this happens, a large amount of insulin is released in the blood, due to which the blood sugar level decreases rapidly.

As a result of this process, you start feeling tired and hungry.

When you are under a lot of stress, a hormone called cortisol has to work hard, which increases the feeling of fatigue and drowsiness.

By the way, it is better to know that if you are suffering from lack of sleep, then you are also more likely to be affected by stress, due to which there is often lethargy and drowsiness in the afternoon.


Author: DoctorMaryam.org

3rd Professional Medical Student. Karachi Medical and Dental College.

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