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Question
Posted by: Bronwan | 2010/09/02

Bad Diet

Good eveing, my name is Bronwan I am a hotel receptionist and work shifts my shifts also includes night shifts below i have included my shifts from the 1st August untill the 12th September so that you can get an idea of how i work:

Early - 6am - 3pm
Late - 2pm -11pm
Night - 10pm - 7am

01/08 - Early
02/08 - Night
03/08 - Off
04/08 - Late
05/08 - Early
06/08 - Early
07/08 - Late
08/08 - Late
09/08 - Late
10/08 - Late
11/08 - Early
12/08 - Off
13/08 - Night
14/08 - Night
15/08 - Late
16/08 - Night
17/08 - Off
18/08 - Late
19/08 - Early
20/08 - Early
21/08 - Late
22/08 - Late
23/08 - Off
24/08 - Off
25/08 - Late
26/08 - Early
27/08 - Night
28/08 - Night
29/08 - Night
30/08 - Late
31/08 - Night
01/09 - Night
02/09 - Late
03/09 - Off
04/09 - Late
05/09 - Late
06/09 - Night
07/09 - Night
08/09 - Late
09/09 - Off
10/09 - Off
11/09 - Off
12/09 - Off

As you can see above i work all the different shifts, my main concern is the health hazzards associated with working night shift. On night shift i generally have about 2 cups of coffee or 500ml Coke - Cola and as you can see in many instances when i come off a night shift that is at 7am then the same day i have to start work at 2pm that is just 7hours between shifts so this normaly means the following for me get home at 7:15am make breakfast (if I eat at all) climb into be at about 8am asleep by 9am (if i do not take a sleeping pill) wake up around 12 - 12:30 make myself something to eat (if Im hungry which does not happen alot) get ready for work again back at work by 13:45 till 11pm when i get home ill eat.and to top it all off I have started getting terrible headaches and battle to sleep and i do not know if this is relavent but I have an under active Thyroid and i am on Eltroxin 0.05mg pill daily for the rest of my life. My current diet consists of Pies, Chocolate, Coke-cola, Crisps, Hotdogs, Boerewors Rolls, Pasta, Pizza, Burgers as this is the fastest to prepare or buy when i have such little time between shifts.

I am sick of beign over Weight i am 22 and weight 99kg and i have been overweight since i was between 5-7years of age.

I really hope you can help me with some advice on my Question.

Warm regards
Bronwan

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageDietDoc

Dear Bronwan
I can understand that your work schedule would firstly try the patience of a saint and secondly start making you feel ill. One of the most important factors in keeping you healthy and to help you lose some weight is for you to stop eating those high-fat, high-sugar take-away foods. Please check out the slimming diets on this Website by clicking on 'Diet'nFood' at the top of this page, 'Weight loss', ‘Balanced diet’ and then on 'Slimming Diet'. Select the diet that you reckon you could stay on for the next 6 months (e.g. the low-fat, high-fibre balanced diet) and then make a list of the kinds of foods you need to be able to stick to the selected diet (e.g. low-fat yoghurt, high-fibre cereal, fruit and vegetables (you can use frozen vegs to speed-up preparation time), lean meat, eggs, cottage cheese, etc). Then work out how many items of each food you need to buy for a week (depending on when you can go shopping - so for example you may need to buy 7 small fat-free yoghurt, a carton of high-fibre bran cereal, etc). Buy the provisions for the week and store perishable items in the fridge or freezer. Then take a firm decision to take out those foods you need for the following day and take them with to work so that you can start eating 3 balanced, low-fat meals a day to replace all the high-fat, high-sugar food and drinks you buy at take-away outlets. It will take some organising to achieve this, but you may have time during the night shifts to work things out carefully - what to buy, how much per time period, what to take out for each day, when to eat what. If you find that this is too difficult please consult a registered dietitian (visit the Association for Dietetics in SA Website at: www.adsa.org.za and click on "Find a Dietitian" to find a dietitian in your area). The dietitian will have to work out an eating schedule for you in similar fashion. When you have your eating plan worked out and you start losing weight, you also need to start doing some form of regular exercise (skipping may be the best option for you because you can do this anywhere at any time)- even if you start with 10 min a day. You will find that you will have more energy and feel better as the balanced diet and the exercise kicks in. Give it a try because you cannot continue to eat junk food and drink cold drinks all the time. Continue with your Eltroxin as it helps to regulate your sluggish metabolism.
If all else fails, change your job (which may not be an option at present) or ask for a less impossible schedule (check the labour rules to see if you are not working more hours than legally permitted).
Holding thumbs for you
DietDoc

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

1
Our users say:
Posted by: DietDoc | 2010/09/02

Dear Bronwan
I can understand that your work schedule would firstly try the patience of a saint and secondly start making you feel ill. One of the most important factors in keeping you healthy and to help you lose some weight is for you to stop eating those high-fat, high-sugar take-away foods. Please check out the slimming diets on this Website by clicking on 'Diet'nFood' at the top of this page, 'Weight loss', ‘Balanced diet’ and then on 'Slimming Diet'. Select the diet that you reckon you could stay on for the next 6 months (e.g. the low-fat, high-fibre balanced diet) and then make a list of the kinds of foods you need to be able to stick to the selected diet (e.g. low-fat yoghurt, high-fibre cereal, fruit and vegetables (you can use frozen vegs to speed-up preparation time), lean meat, eggs, cottage cheese, etc). Then work out how many items of each food you need to buy for a week (depending on when you can go shopping - so for example you may need to buy 7 small fat-free yoghurt, a carton of high-fibre bran cereal, etc). Buy the provisions for the week and store perishable items in the fridge or freezer. Then take a firm decision to take out those foods you need for the following day and take them with to work so that you can start eating 3 balanced, low-fat meals a day to replace all the high-fat, high-sugar food and drinks you buy at take-away outlets. It will take some organising to achieve this, but you may have time during the night shifts to work things out carefully - what to buy, how much per time period, what to take out for each day, when to eat what. If you find that this is too difficult please consult a registered dietitian (visit the Association for Dietetics in SA Website at: www.adsa.org.za and click on "Find a Dietitian" to find a dietitian in your area). The dietitian will have to work out an eating schedule for you in similar fashion. When you have your eating plan worked out and you start losing weight, you also need to start doing some form of regular exercise (skipping may be the best option for you because you can do this anywhere at any time)- even if you start with 10 min a day. You will find that you will have more energy and feel better as the balanced diet and the exercise kicks in. Give it a try because you cannot continue to eat junk food and drink cold drinks all the time. Continue with your Eltroxin as it helps to regulate your sluggish metabolism.
If all else fails, change your job (which may not be an option at present) or ask for a less impossible schedule (check the labour rules to see if you are not working more hours than legally permitted).
Holding thumbs for you
DietDoc

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