Most adults spend at least eight hours a day at their workplace. They usually eat in breaks, most often indiscriminately and in a hurry. Even more irregularly eat the shift workers, preferring unhealthy food. However, a healthy diet is not so expensive as many believe. The main thing is to know what you eat. Is it possible - in time and in a balanced manner to eat in the workplace when working in different shifts?
Features of power supply for shift work
People working in shifts spend a tremendous amount of energy. To be and remain able-bodied, they need to pay attention to their diet. After all, irregular meals will have negative consequences for their health.
The health and endurance of shift workers, especially those working at night, is severely strained. An irregular, sliding work schedule can become a factor of stress for the body and mind and is accompanied by numerous problems: fatigue, insomnia, limited capacity for work, loss of appetite, diseases of the gastrointestinal tract or cardiovascular system.
As well as in animals, the human body functions are subject to certain rhythms, day and night."Tact" for them is set by the "internal clock" - the core of the nerve in the brain, which reacts to light and controls our biorhythms. Human performance is usually high during the day, and at night the body switches to night mode and stores energy. The pulse rate and pressure decrease, the digestive secretion is reduced, and the liver activity and the need for warmth, on the contrary, increase.
Shift work seriously breaks our biological rhythms, requires a person of the same degree of endurance in the evening and at night, as the working day. The rhythm of the organism is set by the brain and is closely related to the annoying effect exerted by light on the human eye. If by means of ambient light the body "communicates" a certain mode of night and day, then the "central sensor" is also fitted to this rhythm. So people manage to get used to other time zones while traveling.
In turn, eating almost does not affect our "internal clock", because only peripheral "sensors" react to this process. Thus, if the meal is not eaten in time, the body releases digestive enzymes, without getting out of the habitual rhythm of day and night. It sounds soothing - otherwise working at night would have to make an alarm clock to eat during the day.
Although food does not affect our "internal clock", shift workers must pay attention to a balanced distribution of food between their meals and sit down at the right time. Due to this, the body, which spends extra energy on "switching" between day and night rhythms, gets support.
Rules for feeding the night shift
Here are some tips for people whose working time falls between 22 and 6 hours.
Optimum meal schedule for night shift work
- The energy requirement of a person working on a night shift is just as great as working in the daytime, except that the distribution of meals is different. During night work, at least one full-fledged food intake is required, which corresponds to energy consumption in the labor process. Thanks to this, the appetite normalizes and violations in the work of the gastrointestinal tract are prevented.
- A well-defined time of eating and pausing during the shift provides a better feeling.
- It's best to stick to the next power schedule. It will be useful to have a light dinner at home before the shift, between 19 and 20 hours. Midnight is the time of hot food, and two hours before the end of work it is recommended to have a snack again. Hot food warms and revitalizes, and snacks prevent the lowering of blood sugar and positively affect working capacity and concentration.
Best products for working at night
- At night, the food should be low-fat and easily digestible.
- As a hot main course, it is better to choose vegetable stew and baked lean meat or fish with a garnish of potatoes in a uniform, whole grained rice, macaroni from coarse flour, and also salads and vegetables. An alternative to these dishes can serve as soup - it's easy to take with you from home and quickly warm up.
- For snacks, low-fat dairy products, fruits, compotes, breads and whole wheat bread with cheese or ham, as well as salad are suitable.
- Two hours before sleep, it is not recommended to drink coffee or black tea, as these drinks stimulate blood circulation and exert an invigorating effect on the body, thereby depriving him of a well-deserved rest.
- In the morning it is also desirable to go to bed not immediately after work, but to allocate a little time in order to "switch" to the state of sleep. For example, you can walk or read. A light breakfast is not forbidden.
- Daylight and noise can cause sleep after a work shift and disrupt the operation of the "internal clock".To prevent this, you need to rest in a quiet and darkened room.