A recent article in the New York Times brought attention to a rising issue in the trucking industry: obesity.
According to a 2007 study from The Journal of the American Dietetic Association, a shocking 86% of the over 3 million truck drivers in the United States are overweight or obese. Weight issues, especially those brought on by poor eating habits and lack of exercise, can lead to serious health problems. These health problems can lead to a shortened life span and low quality of life.
Though the Department of Transportation requires drivers to pass medical examinations every two years, the growth of obesity in the trucking industry continues. Medical examinations check heart conditions, blood pressure, blood sugar, respiratory conditions, sleep disorders, and other health conditions that affect the ability of a trucker to drive safely. But while many health issues are discovered early by these examinations, the potentially strenuous lifestyle choices that some truckers make do so much harm to their bodies that health problems develop quickly.
Unfortunately for truck drivers, when it comes to healthy food and exercise, convenience normally triumphs over healthy. After being on the road for hours and miles on end, most truckers find it hard to make time for exercising or cooking healthy meals. Truck stop convenience food doesn’t help either. With an abundance of fried foods, potato chips, candy bars, and sugary drinks like soda and energy drinks, it’s easy to see why there is a growing problem. The combination of unhealthy food choices with the fact that drivers spend up to 11 hours a day in a sedentary position while driving is bound to create health issues.
We understand that getting fit for the road can be difficult and seem like an overwhelming obstacle. Even people that have constant access to nutrient-rich foods still have trouble making healthy life choices. The first step on your road to success involves being educated, making informed decisions, and planning ahead.
Here are some tips on living healthy as a truck driver to help you get started:
- Healthy Eating Habits for Truck Drivers
- Tips for New Truck Drivers - Eating on a Budget
- Trucking Tips: Cooking & Eating On The Road
- Choosing Your Diet As A Truck Driver
- How OTR Truck Drivers Can Stay Healthy
Make sure that one of your 2012 New Year resolutions is to start living a healthy lifestyle!