Needing Help With Sugar Cravings?

The other day it was raining ☔️ here in my hometown of Brisbane, so I thought what better way than to experiment in the kitchen!

Now given the majority of shift workers experience “hangry” moments thanks to blood sugar dysregulation as a result of sleep disruption, I wanted to come up with a recipe that would help to keep sugar cravings at bay.

Meet Mr Macadamia Nut Hummus– the perfect sugar craving antidote whether you’re on an early shift, late shift, night shift or heaven forbid a “normal” shift – lol

Macadamia nuts are high in healthy monounsaturated fats to keep you feeling fuller for longer, and are a great source of magnesium, potassium, copper, iron, vitamins B1, B3 & E, phosphorus and zinc.

Chickpeas are packed with gut-friendly fibre which help to stabilise blood sugar levels (and fend off those “hangry” cravings), as well as making them great for insulin-resistant individuals or diabetics. Health conditions which are becoming increasingly common in those who work 24/7.

In addition, chickpeas are a great source of protein and contain minerals such as iron, magnesium, copper and zinc.

What’s in it?

  • 2/3 cup roasted macadamias
  • 1 can chickpeas
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • Handful of parsley

How to make it?

Throw everything into a food processor for 10-15 seconds (I like a chunky consistency), or longer until smooth.

Store in a container to bring into work to have with crackers or veggie sticks and share with workmates (maybe?!) It’s also delicious as a base on sourdough toast topped with eggs, mushrooms and/or roasted tomatoes!

Enjoy,

Audra x

How Fast Are You Eating?

Have you ever thought about how fast you might be eating?  

Seem like a strange question?!!

Well, the reason I ask is because according to a study published in the British Medical Journal (2018), eating speed was shown to affect obesity, BMI and weight circumference of subjects.

This is because eating quickly is associated with impaired glucose and insulin resistance, a known risk factor for diabetes – which is a condition prevalent in many who work 24/7.

Eating quickly can also lead to an increase in BMI and obesity because fast eaters may continue to eat despite having consumed sufficient amounts of calories.

When we’re running on reduced sleep (like most shift workers!!) we also don’t always receive a signal telling us that we’re feeling full because sleep deprivation suppresses an appetite regulating hormone called leptin.

So whilst we often have to inhale our food at a rate of knots thanks to time restraints around our meal breaks, being mindful of the speed at which you are eating can be a simple (and free) strategy for minimising weight gain whilst working irregular shift rotations.

Audra x

References:

Hurst, Y & Fukuda, H 2018, ‘Effects of changes in eating speed on obesity in patients with diabetes: a secondary analysis of longitudinal health check-up data’, British Medical Journal, vol. 8, no. 1.

Paz-Graniel, I, Babio, N, Mendez, I & Salas-Salvado, J 2019, ‘Association between eating speed and classical cardiovascular risk factors: A cross-sectional study’, Nutrients, vol. 11, no. 1, pp. 1-10.

HSW 99 – Shift Scheduling and Chronotypes with Michael Wieden.

This week we’re heading all the way to Germany to chat with Michael Wieden, the founder of Aliamos, a company that works with organisations to improve the health and well-being of employees by taking into consideration the unique biological rhythms of individuals.

Things we discuss:

1. What is chronobiology, and why is it important for shift workers to understand its significance?
2. What are chronotypes and how do they influence our ability to work specific shifts?
3. How incorporating plant-based food options into workplace canteens is improving the health of employees.
4. Why the mindset of the employer is key in rolling out successful health and wellbeing programs.

Links mentioned on the podcast:
Michael’s website – http://www.wieden.com/ and https://www.aliamos.de/
Michael’s email – wieden@aliamos.de
Michael’s Instagram account – liquidworker

What This Corona Virus Is Really Teaching Us.

Things are certainly changing day by day (if not hour by hour) since the outbreak of this coronavirus, but I’d like to just pause for a moment, and ask ourselves what can we learn from this?

In other words, what is this corona virus really teaching us?

Because I think its been the biggest wake-up call in our history, to remind us of how critically important (and fragile) our health is.

For far too many of us, we continue to neglect our bodies with poor dietary and lifestyle choices – taking our health for granted which over the long-term, is going to lead to poor health outcomes.

Unlike a virus, however, poor dietary and lifestyle choices don’t have an immediate impact.  

(more…)

What To Eat (and Drink) On Early Shift.

Do you work a lot of early shifts?  They’re pretty brutal aren’t they?  Especially when the alarm clock goes off at “stupid o’clock” as one of my clients so beautifully described.

It’s why this week I want to talk about ‘What To Eat (And Drink) On Early Shift.’

Whether you’re starting at 5am, 6am … or even 3am like I used to when I was working at the international airport (they really did hurt I can assure you – lol!!) – those feelings of fatigue really kick in thanks to the disruption to the quantity and quality of your sleep.

In geeky science terms, we refer to this as the homeostatic sleep drive or sleep pressure, and sleep rhythm.

From a quality perspective, early shifts can wake us up right in the middle of a sleep cycle which is a bit like stopping your washing machine in the middle of it’s cycle, and pulling out the washing when it’s still soggy!

From a quantitative perspective, if we haven’t tucked ourselves into bed at a reasonable hour then the fatigue effects of that early shift can be magnified even further.

So when it comes to establishing what to eat and drink on early shifts, I like to approach it from 2 key areas:

(more…)