Research shows that working different shift patterns, including nights can have a detrimental effect on the body and mind. Shift work interferes with the natural body clock, affecting the production of hormones that regulate our sleep-wake cycle and even leave workers susceptible to certain illnesses and diseases.
So, it’s vital for these individuals to eat well, stay active and get adequate rest. That’s why we’ve put together our top tips for staying hydrated (and healthy) if you work the nightshift.
Eat Hydrating Foods
Overeating or undereating can be a problem for night shift workers and it’s easy to take advantage of vending machines, fast food, or cafes. Eating these types of foods can lead to weight gain. Instead of eating large meals before and after work, it’s best to plan small meals throughout your shift which can help to keep your energy levels boosted and avoid unnecessary snacking.
Pack foods which are easy to grab and go such as a Tupperware tub of chopped fruits like strawberries, grapes, melon, and orange segments. These are not only great for a healthy snack, but fruit has a high-water content and can help to keep you hydrated during your shift.
Our Hydratem8 food pot range is also perfect if you’re on the night shift because you can still enjoy a warm, healthy meal without the need of a cooker or a microwave. Just heat your food before transferring it to the food pot and it’ll still be warm when you come to eat it later. Soups are great for hydration as they are mostly liquid and they’re easy to transport in the food pot.
Most people enjoy a caffeinated drink, usually in the morning to help them wake up and feel more alert but drinking them throughout your shift is not advisable. Instead, balance your intake of caffeinated drinks with beverages such as water or herbal tea.
You can track your intake of water using one of our tracker bottles, that way you will easily be able to monitor your fluid intake during your shift. Save money on buying take out coffees, too, by investing in one of our insulated bottles. Simply make your hot drink at home and take it to work with you, it’ll still be warm hours later.
Increase Protein Intake
Try to eat a high protein meal before you leave for your shift or eat in the early evening as this will ensure you have the energy you need to complete the tasks ahead. Protein will help you to feel satisfied for longer, too, so you’re less likely to reach for fatty or sugary snacks.
When you’ve finished your shift, it can be tempting to just go home, sleep and chill but it’s also important to factor in some physical activity into your daily routine. Exercise will help to keep you at a healthy weight, keep your bowel movements regular and is good for your mental health. If you can get outside during daylight hours, then you’ll also be topping up your body’s vitamin D stores.
Stay healthy this winter with the Hydratem8 range!