The number 1 most commonly used drug in the world today is coffee, and this is because the vast proportion of the population is not exposed to the morning light.
We’ve moved from spending so much of our lives outdoors, to a completely indoor one and shift workers are especially vulnerable due to having to work shifts that go against the body’s innate timing system or circadian rhythm.
Morning light exposure stimulates the eye to instigate subconscious functions within the body. It activates the autonomic nervous system, part of the body that controls heartbeat, waste excretion, hunger, thirst etc.
Whenever we’re feeling sick, run down or our energy is low, we often resort to eating heavy foods such as chicken soup.
Whilst this may work for some, when we’re unwell, we often lose our appetite.
Our body essentially sends us a signal “not to eat”.
Yet we think we need to eat to have more energy.
Whilst elements of this are true, the reality is most of the population is overeating – especially when working 24/7. This has led to many experiencing weight gain, dysregulated blood sugar, gut issues etc.
When we get sick, we often can’t keep food down.
So is this really the body’s way of helping you to heal? To remove food from your stomach in order to utilize the maximum amount of energy for healing?
Because digesting heavy food depletes energy resources essential for healing.
Soooooo I’m going to be addressing a bit of an Elephant in the Room here, but have you measured your waistline lately?
Now before you scramble for the DELETE or unsubscribe button, the reason why I’m raising awareness around this topic is that my entire Healthy Shift Worker philosophy has always been about sharing stuff that people don’t necessarily want to hear, but need to.
Quite simply, I care about your health, and want you to be the healthiest version of yourself possible.
That being said, I’d be pretty safe to say that most people would have answered with a “no’ to a waistline check, so don’t take it personally if you can resonate!
But let’s get back to your waistline, and why its circumference is important.
Could you be unknowingly poisoning yourself?
It might sound like an odd question to ask as none of us would ever want to intentionally harm ourselves, however, I remember back in my early 20’s when I was new to shift work (and eating crap food) – I went from being quite lean to becoming quite puffy.
By some miracle, I didn’t really gain much weight, but my face and hands became swollen and I was always bloated.
What I didn’t realise at the time, was that I was slowly poisoning myself by eating toxic foods containing refined sugars and inflammatory fats that were leading to systemic inflammation.
Besides sapping our energy, chronic low-level inflammation can damage blood vessels, weaken our muscles and cause absolute havoc on our hormones!
Ouch! As if shift work isn’t hard enough?!
Don’t these look amazing!!
Now when we walk into most staff lunchrooms, we often see cakes, cookies and lollies spread across multiple tables (I know they’re there as I’ve been in many a shift working lunchroom over the years …LOL), but wouldn’t it be nice to see something healthy feature on those tables instead?
Imagine if everyone made a delicious plant-based dish and brought it into share for something different (as opposed to those other things we just mentioned), the lunchroom would immediately turn into a tapas-style restaurant… even though you’re actually at work!