Does eating meat make you tired?

I know from personal experience that when I eat a lot of meat, especially in one sitting, I feel really tired afterward. I was curious if this is a general feeling or just something that happens to me.

So this got me thinking about whether there’s any truth to the idea that meat consumption can make you tired.

So, I did some research on the topic and found some interesting information and after doing the research, it turns out there is the truth behind it! 

So today, we’ll take a look at what research says about the link between meat and fatigue. Keep reading to learn more about it.

What makes you tired after eating meat?

There are a few reasons why consuming meat makes you tired.

1. Nutrient composition of meat:

The first reason has to do with the nutrient composition of meat. In order for our bodies to function properly, we need protein from meat. The digestion of protein, however, consumes a significant amount of energy.

In fact, digesting protein requires about 25-30% more energy than digesting carbohydrates. This means that when you eat a lot of protein, your body has to work harder to break it down and use it for energy. This extra work can lead to fatigue.

2. High-fat Content:

Meat is often high in fat. In addition, fat consumes more energy than carbohydrates to digest. If you tend to eat a lot of fatty meats, that extra fat can also weigh you down and make you feel tired.

3. High in Iron:

Another reason why meat could make you tired is that it’s often high in iron. We need iron for a wide range of functions in our bodies. However, too much iron can actually be toxic and can cause fatigue. So, if you eat a lot of meat that is high in iron, this could lead to fatigue.

4. Reaction to meat:

Some people may simply have a negative reaction to certain meats, which can cause fatigue or other symptoms.

5. Hard Digesting:

Additionally, certain types of meat (particularly red meat) can be hard to digest, which can lead to discomfort and fatigue. If you eat large quantities of meat, your body may have difficulty processing all of the nutrients, leading to feelings of exhaustion.

The science behind why meat makes you tired?

According to the research of the National Center for Biotechnology Information, when you eat meat, your body has to work harder to digest it. This means that after a meat-heavy meal, you may feel more tired than you would if you’d eaten something else.

The type of meat you eat can also affect how your body responds. Red meat, in particular, is harder to digest than chicken or fish. Due to its higher fat and protein content, it takes longer to break down. Fatty meats can also make you feel tired after eating them.

This is because the fat can slow down your digestion and make you feel weighed down. So, if you’re noticing that you always feel exhausted after eating a steak dinner, it might be time to switch to a leaner cut or try a different protein altogether.

Another study conducted by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley found that meat makes you tired because it contains a chemical known as adenosine.

Adenosine is a nucleoside that’s found in all body tissues, and it plays an important role in regulating sleep. When adenosine binds to receptors in the brain, it causes feelings of drowsiness and fatigue.

That’s why after eating a big steak dinner, you might feel like taking a nap. 

Tips for avoiding the fatigue that comes with eating meat

There are several tips to combat the fatigue caused by consuming meat. These are as follows:

1. Avoid processed meats:

Avoid processed meats

Processed meats are full of additives and preservatives that can make them difficult to digest, leading to fatigue. Stick to fresh, unprocessed meats instead.

2. Balance your meals:

Protein-rich and low-carbohydrate diets can lead to fatigue. Be sure to include plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains in your diet to maintain energy levels.

3. Get enough iron:

Iron is essential for carrying oxygen to the cells, and a lack of iron can lead to fatigue. Foods rich in iron, like leafy greens, legumes, and lean red meat, should be consumed.

4. Drink plenty of fluids:

Dehydration can cause fatigue. Stay hydrated throughout the day by drinking plenty of water.

5. Get enough sleep:

Fatigue can be caused by a lack of sleep. Avoid fatigue by getting seven to eight hours of sleep each night.

6. Exercise:

Do daily exercise

Exercise can help increase energy levels and combat fatigue. Try to get at least 30 minutes of exercise each day.

Following these tips, you can help to avoid the fatigue associated with meat consumption.

Factors that affect how fatigued you feel after a meat meal

There are many factors that can contribute to how tired or exhausted you get after consuming meat.

  • The kind of meat,
  • The way it was cooked, and
  • Your own personal metabolism all plays a role.

– For example, red meat is generally fattier and harder to digest than leaner meats like chicken or fish. This can lead to feeling sluggish after a meal. Processed meats like hot dogs and deli meat can also be difficult to digest and may contain additives that can further contribute to feelings of fatigue.

– How you cook meat can also affect how it makes you feel afterward. Fried or greasy foods can be especially hard to digest and can leave you feeling fatigued. Grilling or baking meat can help to reduce these effects.

– The most important thing is to listen to your body and find what works best for you. Some people may find that they feel more energetic after the consumption of meat, while others may feel lazy. So make adjustments based on your own personal experience.

If you find that certain meats make you feel more tired than others, try to limit your intake of those meats. And, if you are cutting back on meat overall, be sure to get enough protein from other sources to avoid feeling fatigued.

What are the benefits of eating meat?

There are a number of benefits to consuming meat, including the following:

1. Protein is an important component of meat which is essential for the body to build and repair tissues.

2. Meat is also a rich source of iron, which is necessary for red blood cells to carry oxygen around the body.

3. Meat has zinc, which is necessary for the immune system to function properly.

4. Moreover, meat contains B vitamins, energy metabolism and nervous system function depend on them.

5. The consumption of meat can help to increase satiety after meals, meaning that you are less likely to snack on unhealthy foods.

6. Meat is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, which have a number of health benefits, including reducing inflammation and supporting heart health.

7. finally, meat is a good source of selenium, which is a mineral that has antioxidant properties and can help to protect cells from damage.

Potential downsides of eating meat

There are a few cons of meat eating. These are as follows:

1. Meat is a high-fat food, which can contribute to weight gain and obesity if consumed in excess.

2. Meat is also high-cholesterol food, which can increase the risk of heart disease if consumed in excess.

3. Some people may have difficulty digesting meat, especially red meat, due to its high-fat content.

4. Some types of meat, such as processed meats or meats that are grilled or smoked, can contain harmful chemicals that may increase the risk of cancer.

How much meat is too much?

Consuming more than the recommended amount of meat per day can increase your risks of certain chronic diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. The daily recommended meat intake depends on your age, gender, and level of physical activity. In general, however, moderation is key.

For example, the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends that men aged 19 and older consume no more than 56 grams (about 2 ounces) of meat per day, and women consume no more than 46 grams (about 1.6 ounces) per day. If you are physically active, you may be able to consume more meat without increasing your risk of chronic disease.


It seems that different meats have different effects on energy levels, and it’s also likely that how a person reacts to meat will vary depending on their own individual biology.

Generally speaking, beef can be more taxing on the body than white meat or poultry. It seems like meat consumption can have an energizing effect – at least in the short term.

However, if someone has a healthy diet overall and includes plenty of fruits and vegetables, then eating moderate amounts of red meat should not have a negative impact on energy levels.

If you’re looking for ways to boost your energy levels, including some protein from lean meats in your diet may be a good option. What have been your experiences with eating meat and fatigue? Let us know in the comments below!


What are some healthier alternatives to red meat?

If you are looking for a healthier substitute for red meat, there are many options available. Compared to red meat, fish, poultry, and beans are excellent sources of protein. You can also choose leaner cuts of red meat (e.g., loin, round, sirloin) to reduce your saturated fat intake.

What are the healthiest meats to eat?

Fish, chicken, turkey, and shellfish are the healthiest meats you can eat. These meats are low in saturated fat and cholesterol, and they contain omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for your heart health.
Red meat can also be part of a healthy diet, but it is important to choose lean cuts of meat and to limit your intake of processed meats, such as bacon, sausage, and deli meats.

Should you limit eating red meat if you’re tired?

Yes, you should limit your intake of beef if you’re feeling tired. There is no doubt that red meat is a rich source of protein and iron, however, it can also have high levels of saturated fat and cholesterol.
For a healthier alternative, choose small cuts of red meat or poultry. You can also add more veggies to your diet to help boost your energy levels.

Leave a Comment