Is Your Caffeine Intake Leaving You Malnourished?

Do you rely on caffeine to get you through your shift … whether that’s in the form of a coffee, soda or energy drink? 

Perhaps you rely on two, three, or maybe even more for an energy hit to keep you going?

Whilst I’m partial to a 1/2 strength latte or mocha myself, did you know that habitual caffeine intake can contribute to malnutrition? 

It does so by depleting key vitamins and minerals such as:

  • Iron – a single cup of coffee can reduce iron absorption from a meal by as much as 75%!
  • Calcium and Magnesium – half a cup of caffeine (50mg) depletes the body of calcium and magnesium. Larger doses deplete even more.
  • Potassium – 300mg of caffeine increases potassium loss by one third.
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Does Your Workplace Have A Lollie Jar?

I was speaking at a conference on the weekend, and I asked the attendees the following question:

“Do you have a lollie jar stashed in a drawer at work? There were quite a few nods in the room, and one guy even said they have a Lollie Locker!

Whooska. Well, at least he was honest.

The thing is, they’re pretty much in every shift working workplace on the planet.

Incredibly, (but not surprisingly), they line the drawers of most hospital wards … but don’t get me started about the food in the hospitals. I’m going to save that for an entirely different email!!

Anyway, I digress.

Getting back to the lollie jar. Does your workplace also have those “fundraising choccies” that make several appearances throughout the year??

It’s for a good cause, right?

Well … yes, I’m not going to disagree with that, but at what cost to those who are consuming these sugar-laden treats?

You see, when we’re constantly sleep-deprived our bodies are essentially in a state of ‘fight or flight’ which leads us to crave sugar.

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HSW 75 – Holidays, Hiking and Social Media Fasting!

This week I went completely solo on The Healthy Shift Worker podcast, as I’ve just returned home from holidays where I enjoyed some time away with my husband hiking in parts of New Zealand, along with having some “time out” from social media.

Fiordland National Park, Milford Sound, New Zealand

In this episode, I reflect on where we went – which included a cruise from Melbourne to Kangaroo Island, along with a motorhome jaunt around the beautiful South Island of New Zealand.

My intentions whilst being away however, was to undergo some social media “fasting”, so tune in to hear how I went, how I felt and why I recommend all shift workers nominate a time and day to do the same.

Links mentioned on the podcast:

Self Control App – https://selfcontrolapp.com
Healthy Shift Worker Wellness Workshop Enquiries – audra@healthyshiftworker.com

Shift Work Sickness – How A Change In Attitude Can Help Boost Your Immune System!

If you are someone that suffers from shift work sickness, have you ever considered that your attitude might be partly to blame? I’m thinking probably not, so you might be interested to know that optimistic people actually have stronger immune systems.

In fact optimistic people are 77% less likely to die of heart attack or stroke than pessimists, are less stressed, more resilient, tend to age better and even live longer.

Sounds pretty good doesn’t it?

You see as shift workers it’s really easy to be negative and miserable because we’re always feeling so darn tired all of the time, but it certainly doesn’t have to be that way.

Negativity drains people of energy which is not good – most shiftworkers are desperately crying out for more energy!

Negative thoughts are toxic. They release chemicals that are harmful to the immune system, deplete energy, speed aging and damage brain cells.

So as you can see, a negative attitude can literally make you sick!

Studies have also revealed that at least 75% of illness originates in the mind. Prolonged negativity leads to depression which releases more toxic hormones that further weaken the immune system and lower the body’s ability to fight disease.

Instead, people with a positive attitude bounce back faster when things get them down. Positive thoughts release serotonin which makes us feel good, aids memory and can even prevents brain damage.

Now the good news is that a positive attitude can be developed. Since we can change our thoughts, we can certainly change our attitude.

So stop complaining, criticising, and judging. It’s only going to make you prone to shift work sickness – and a person that nobody wants to hang around with.

If you’re constantly getting sick all of the time when you’re working shift work, try changing your attitude – you might be pleasantly surprised with the results!