Weight Loss In Shift Work:

Why Is It So Hard To Achieve?

Lose weight concept with person on a scale measuring kilograms

When it comes to New Year’s Resolutions, weight loss would have to top the charts hands down – every single year, every single time.

But when you’re a shift worker – achieving this goal can become even harder to reach.

In fact you probably go to bed at night (or the day, depending on your shift), wondering if you’re ever going to get back to that svelt figure that you once had when you were 16 years of age.

OK, if that’s what you’re aiming for then we may need to readjust your goals a little!

However if you’re trying to lose weight around working crazy and irregular hours, it can often feel as though it’s one step forward, two steps back.

Sounding familiar?

Have you ever wondered why it’s so hard?

Well there are a number of reasons why but in a nutshell, whenever we’re sleep deprived our body essentially becomes biologically stressed (*).

Yep that’s right.

Our body is stressed even before we’ve walked through the front door and started our shift! (more…)

A New Year And Another New Diet?

2014 new years resolution is DIET!As we delve into another New Year, its often all about New Year’s resolutions and which new diet can we try this time round.  Unfortunately for most of us, we often throw in the towel with any new diet because thoughts of deprivation creep into our psyche making it all too hard to sustain.

Of course an erratic work and eating schedule certainly doesn’t help, but how about trying something different this year and make your New Year’s resolution not to go on a diet.

Yep, that’s right.

It’s time to give this whole dieting thing the flick because it just messes with your head and makes you constantly think about, and focus on food all of the time.

And no matter whether it’s counting calories or committing to 30 days of diet shakes and pills – it’s just not sustainable (or enjoyable for that matter).

I remember trying to lose 10kgs of extra weight which I gained within my first year of starting shift work and it was hard, really hard.  I had never been on a diet before (nor had I needed too because I was always quite sporty and athletic) so the entire concept of just being “on a diet” put my head into a bit of a tail spin.

All of a sudden I was fixated on every single item of food that went inside my mouth.  It became like an obsession which literally took over my life for quite a few years.  It became a roller coaster ride of having tight clothes to wear; followed by skinny clothes to wear, followed by tight clothes- you get the picture.

It was such a crazy way to live.

But the moment I stopped thinking about what I ate (AKA “fired my diet”), the weight began to fall off and stabilize.  I began listening to my body feeding it real, seasonal and whole foods which my body eagerly soaked up and became revitalised from the added nutrition.

I’m sure it was secretly breathing a huge sigh of relief as well.  Thank goodness – no more dieting!

So forget about jumping on another soul destroying “roller-coaster diet ride” this New Year.

  • Listen to your body and stop eating when you’re full.
  • Gradually remove (and replace) all packaged, tinned and bottled foods with foods that do not have an ingredients list that you need a chemistry degree to decipher.
  • And just JERF!  That’s short for “just eat real foods” by the way.

A life without dieting is the best “diet” you can ever be on, and most importantly your body (and your sleep-deprived mind) will thank you for it.

Instant Weight Loss – Is It Reallly Possible When You Work Shift Work?

Many people today are searching for that fast, instant way to lose weight despite having to work shift work. In fact most of us would like to lose 5 kilograms by the end of the week – without having to do all of the hard work in between.

But is it really possible to achieve instant weight loss when you work shift work? Or more importantly, is it really a good idea?

Well even though it may be something that you aspire too – it’s not realistic.

Let’s say you’ve gained 20 kilograms over the past few years. Then you’re certainly not going to lose those 20 kilograms (or even 5 kilograms) in a matter of days – and nor should you want to.

Despite what is promised on the front cover of the latest women’s magazines that flood the shelves of newsagents around the world – the celebrity weight loss stories that you read are just not true. It’s talented and incredibly savvy publishers that are luring you in with their fancy magazine headlines –

– “Lose 8 Kilo’s In Just 4 Days” or

– “How ‘Celebrity X’ Went From A Size 16 to 10 In Just 1 Week!”

Unfortunately the media portrays these people as having achieved instant weight loss results in a very short period of time, when in reality they’ve been busting their butts over a lot longer period and have had a bit of ‘air brushing’ help thanks to the editor.

So the trick to achieving weight loss despite having to work crazy and irregular hours is actually much easier than you think.

Aim to lose just ONE kilogram at a time because one kilogram will turn into two; two kilograms will turn into three; and so on.

It’s all about progress not perfection.

Life is not a race – it’s a marathon, and it’s the baby steps that will help you to lose the shift work weight – and lose it for good.

Why Working Shift Work Makes You Gain Weight!

Working shift work is hard – no question. But if you’re working shift work and trying to lose weight, then it can be even harder.

Because not only do shift workers have to work crazy hours, they also have to eat at irregular times as well.

And considering our digestive systems slow right down during the night when we should be sleeping – weight gain amongst shift workers is certainly a common place.

You’re also more likely to eat high processed, sugary foods, along with a vast array of high-caffeinated energy drinks to help keep you awake.

So how can you break away from this bad eating cycle?

Well it’s about taking responsibility for your health and being aware of the toxic food that you are putting into your mouth every single day.

You cannot expect to feel vibrant and healthy if you’re continually feeding your body processed foods . They cause havoc on your digestive system not only causing you to gain weight, but they also make you feel even more tired and lethargic than you already are.

But if your diet consists of whole foods – that is, foods that have undergone little on no processing, then your body will eventually discard the excess weight. You see weight loss is actually quite easy – if you stop eating junk.

It really is that simple.

So you may not have complete control over when you eat, but you certainly have complete control over what you eat.

It’s time to give up the soft drinks, crisps, lollies and fries. It’s not about depriving yourself of these foods – it’s about replacing them with good healthy food that will not only energize you – but keep the scales under control as well.

Weight Gain – A Shift Worker's Guide To Beating The Battle of The Bulge!

Weight gain is one of the most common complaints that I hear from shift workers every single day. And unfortunately when the weight stacks on and the clothes get tighter, depression usually sets in.

So what can a shift worker do to beat the battle of the bulge?

Well it’s all about introducing an effective eating plan that is conducive to working crazy and irregular hours.

And let’s be honest here – this can be a really hard thing to do.

But at the end of the day, you and only you, have complete control of what does and does not go inside your mouth. So if you’re not happy with your weight right now, the good news is that you do have the power to change it.

You see if you’re doing the same things over and over again, yet expecting different results, then you’re only setting yourself up for disappointment.

You have to be willing to change what you’re doing right now, in order to lose the weight, and beat the battle of the bulge.

The food that you’re putting in your mouth is a vital part of any successful weight loss plan. The old saying ‘We are what we eat’ is very true but unfortunately for most people, the simple truth is that we are eating all the wrong types of foods.

And in many cases, we’re also eating too much of the wrong foods.

So first and foremost I want you to start eliminating processed foods from your diet – no excuses. Take a look in your pantry and refrigerator and if it’s full of food that is packaged in some type of box, jar or container, then it has gone through some sort of processing. And the more food undergoes processing, the fewer nutrients it contains.

Now as shift workers, good nutrition is vital because we are pushing our bodies to do exactly the opposite to what it should be doing and that is being awake when we should be asleep, and being asleep when we should be awake. Oh joy!

But when you give your body optimum nutrition, it has an amazing ability to heal itself and this includes shedding any excess weight.

What I also recommend you do is find someone you can trust and who is knowledgeable about weight loss and diet, and work with them. I personally recommend you have a chat to a well respected doctor who specialises in Nutritional Medicine – that way you can almost guarantee that he or she will be able to ensure you get the right nutrition specific to your needs.

Any money you spend will be an investment in your health and your future. The truth is that it will actually save you a fortune down the track, so please don’t be cheap when it comes to your health.

Most people end up saving a fortune by switching away from processed foods, so that’s got to be a good enough reason and motivation to stop eating them!