Healthy trucking requires eating right, exercise, reducing stress, and getting plenty of rest. It’s no wonder ABC News reports the National Institutes of Health discovered truck drivers suffer from higher rates of obesity, diabetes and respiratory disease than the general population. According to National Institute of Health statistics, more than 50 percent of truckers are obese—nearly twice the national obesity rate—and they have a 50 percent higher prevalence of diabetes compared to the general population.
The higher rates of those diseases among truck drivers might be skewed a bit, given that truck drivers must pass annual physicals, something that is not required of the general population. However, truck driving isn’t exactly a lifestyle known for being healthy. Trucking requires long periods of sitting with little activity combined with eating out often—sometimes all three meals a day, plus snacks.
Drivers can take steps to improve their health by improving their eating habits, exercising more and getting enough rest.
Perhaps the easiest change to make is simply to eat better. If you must eat out, make healthier selections or eat a little less. Portion size can go a long way to reducing pounds. Do you really need the fully loaded bacon double cheeseburger? Is a second trip to the breakfast bar really necessary? How about trying the baked chicken once in awhile rather than the fried?
If you need snacks while driving, consider water and fresh fruits or vegetables as an alternative for healthy trucking. This will provide the energy and vitamins you need without the sugar or caffeine highs that quickly pass and leave you wanting more.
Make it a habit to exercise when you stop. Taking a long walk or working out at least an hour or so before hitting the sack not only helps you burn calories, it also will help you sleep better and reduce stress levels.
Most motels and an increasing number of truck stops have on-site gyms where you can work out. Some national chains promote healthy trucking by offering memberships to truck drivers; often those memberships can be used at locations nationwide.
Avoid sleep aides. Healthy trucking habits help reduce sleeplessness by increasing activity and decreasing stress. Keeping in touch with loved ones and creating a bedtime routine can also help induce sleep. Getting plenty of rest in turn reduces stress, helps with weight management, and makes healthy eating easier.
Healthy trucking requires developing a healthy lifestyle for the road. The eating, sleeping and exercising habits you develop for the road impact the life you live at home. Millis Transfer would like you to have a long, successful and healthy career. To learn more, visit our website or give us a call at 800-937-0880.