My Rebound: Food coma

Posted at 11:59 PM, Aug 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-10 09:23:52-04

Editor's note: Jessica Ann is a restaurant owner who's blogging about trying to rebound from the coronavirus pandemic at My Rebound by FOX 17. She founded The Candied Yam, a Grand Rapids restaurant serving Southern cuisine, in 2016. She is married with a daughter who just graduated high school and an adult son. She lives in Kentwood.

A disease or rather condition, or so they call it. It’s not like COVID, but it’s definitely a pandemic-like, “occurring worldwide, or over a very wide area, crossing international boundaries and usually affecting a large number of people.”


It affects millions, if not billions, around the world each day. Most people will get ‘it’, if they are lucky, multiple times in their life. It’s called the 'itis or as many call it, a food coma.

It’s a real thing, and honestly, if you have not had one, then I surmise your aren’t consuming or getting enough good or great food regularly. The Candied Yam, delightful Southern Cuisine, is a place that boasts of spreading the 'itis. Um, yeah, like it’s our job and falls right behind making fresh scratch made food. Meals that makes you remember the good ole days when mom and grandma use to fuss over the meals; even setting the table to create a perfect experience with love. At first I used to be offended when people would come in the door and walk out and declare “oh my gosh you gotta get a wheelbarrow and get me out!” Or “you just need to place cots on the floor because I can’t drive anywhere”. Behind my big smile my mind was puzzled as to why they would say something like this. I almost would be short of being offended until someone told me what the itis really was. Now, I smile because I know that we’ve fed them so well. They really want to pass out because the food was so good. Pat me on the back boo!

Like I stated, food comas are REAL. I actually looked it up and there is a lot of information. The Urban Dictionary says it’s (food coma): When you eat a large amount of food and soon after feel really tired. Ashley Romero, LVN of Healthy Living with diet and nutrition, says a food coma is a medically recognized condition called post-prandial somnolence, simply meaning a state of drowsiness after a meal. She describes what causes it: “Swallowing your food is the first step to developing a food coma. After being partially digested by the stomach acids, it’s on its way to the intestines. This is where the sleepiness really begins. Nutrients in the food trigger a chain reaction calming down your sympathetic nervous system (the fight or flight syste), and jump-starting your parasympathetic nervous system. This produces a “rest and digest” response causing your body feel very sleepy.” Ok. Makes since to me. I can’t pronounce ‘post-prandial somnolence’ but I do now understand how a food comas happens. Pretty cool to me. Wait! Did you know that or you just found out too?!

I definitely get more food comas as an adult than I did as a kid. I remember, as a kid, only getting food comas at holiday time. A hearty Thanksgiving meal with all the trimming would produce the biggest or mother coma of them all. At Christmas, I was more worried about revisiting the gifts that Santa gave rather than the food. July 4th was pretty great and a marvelous feeling piling bbq, potato salad and other goodies on to my plate with anticipation of eating at least once or even twice more - taking time to take a nap in between each meal. Yes it was a bit greedy. Instead of expanding too much energy between those meals, I was busy napping but in my mind running to make and eat the next plate. Easter was always a good one too, except the time you spent in church watching the clock and thinking “when is the preacher going to complete the sermon - I’m hungry”! We often went to a restaurant on this particular holiday so you knew the wait was going to be overwhelming and crazy - no matter the reservation time. The restaurant seemed to always be behind. Did they not know that I had been sitting in church and dreaming of their buffet the whole time!? Yes I missed parts of the resurrection sermon as my mind wondered and contemplated mysteries like: was the kids buffet going to have gummy bears this year or not? Was the carving station attendant going to have prime rib AND turkey or ham?! When I finally got to the buffet it was then I realized I could only eat one plate because I ate too fast and then I was full. As my father would say, my eyes were bigger than my belly.


There is absolutely nothing better than a food coma. At The Candied Yam, producing food comas are my ultimate goal. I feel fortunate my customers come to me when they want a serious one. Life moves too fast. Don’t forget to slow down every now and again and take a bite out of life ... or take as many bites as you need to get comatose.