50 Ways to Fight Food Coma

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The views expressed on this website/weblog are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Afternoons around 2-3pm are the most difficult time for me. I’m a technical writer so reading/writing/reviewing documentation isn’t the most exciting thing to do in the afternoon. Don’t get me wrong. I love my job. I just hate dealing with food coma. Every other day, I slump in my chair, with hands on the side of my head, a pen in my hand,  and review papers on my desk, I start seeing flying unicorns and two-headed turkeys. zzz… It’s a problem I’ve had since I started working as a technical writer.

I’ve tried all sort of tactics and none work consistently. But I’ll share them anyway in case any of you have problems dealing with food coma. (Note: Not all of them are work or boss-friendly)

Food Related

  • Drink lots of water (and take frequent bathroom breaks).
  • Eat a smaller lunch.
  • Cut back on the carbs.
  • Cut back on the sugar.
  • Eat a higher protein diet.
  • Drink a cup of coffee.
  • Drink a can of caffeinated drink.
  • Munch on some snacks.
  • Chew gum.


  • Do one thing from your to do list.
  • Message a colleague.
  • Call a colleague.
  • Visit a colleague’s cubicle instead.
  • Fill out your timecard.
  • Update your weekly status report.
  • Clean out your mailbox.
  • Avoid afternoon meetings.
  • Arrange your day as to avoid sleep-inducing tasks in the afternoon.
  • Reply a few emails.
  • Read some company/internal news.


  • Tidy up your desk/cubicle.
  • Cleanup the files on your computer and network drives.
  • Organize your computer desktop.
  • Tidy the area around the office/floor printer.
  • Shred papers/documents you don’t need.
  • File documents in binders and cabinets.
  • Wipe your desktop with a wet towel.
  • Turn your keyboard upside down and give it a good whack.
  • Clean out your wallet.


  • Bend over and let the blood flow back to your head.
  • Stand up and do some stretching exercises.
  • Take a short walk around the office/floor.
  • Walk up and down the stairs a few times.
  • Water a few office plants.
  • Take a few deep breaths.
  • Play a quick game of ping pong.

Not Work/Boss-Friendly

  • Put your head down for a few minutes.
  • Read the latest news.
  • Listen to some music.
  • Watch a video on YouTube.
  • Work on a Sudoku puzzle.
  • Send a text message to a friend.
  • Listen to a podcast.
  • Check your emails.
  • Play a game of solitare.
  • Read an article or two from your RSS reader.
  • Play a quick online flash game.
  • Chat with a friend on MSN.
  • Make a grocery shopping list.
  • Write down ideas for blog posts.

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