Gut issues are prevalent in many who work 24/7 due to a myriad of reasons including dehydration, insufficient dietary fibre and especially … mistimed eating.
Mistimed eating is when we eat out of sync to our natural sleep/wake cycle.
If causes gut issues because the stomach, along with all of the ancillary organs involved in digestion such as the liver, kidneys, gall bladder, small and large intestine, do not break down and process foods at night in the same capacity as they do during daylight hours.
And when do most shift workers eat?
All over the place!
Anywhere from 8am, 3pm, 10pm, 2am, 4am … whenever they have a designated break or find the time to squeeze one in if they’re super busy and under the pump.
No doubt you can relate :-).
Whilst most gut complaints are treated symptomatically using pharmaceuticals, one of the BEST ways to help enhance gut motility and reduce things like constipation is a regular practice of gentle exercise or movement.
This can include walking, but one of my absolute FAVOURITE forms of movement is YOGA.
This is because it stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, otherwise known as the ‘rest and digest’ arm of the autonomic nervous system through movement, breath and meditation.
There are also certain poses which target the stomach area, thereby helping in the relief of digestive issues such as constipation and irritable bowel syndrome.
Check out some of these in the pics below.
So if you haven’t already signed up to do a yoga class (or two or three), then I STRONGLY recommend giving it a whirl.
Choosing lifestyle techniques over medication will always lead to better long-term results as the benefits are many.
It’s honest to goodness the BEST form of exercise for shift workers because it helps to relieve stress, improve circulation, along with build strength and flexibility which is so important too!
P.S: There’s a long-held belief that you have to be flexible to do yoga but the opposite is actually true! In order to become flexible you need to do yoga!! 🙂
Want to learn more ways to improve your health whilst working 24/7?
Check out my ‘21-Day Healthy Shift Worker Kickstart Program’ by CLICKING HERE.