Being a firefighter is a physically and mentally demanding job which can involve long and odd hours and this makes eating healthy a bit trickier. Some studies have said 73% of career firefighters are classed as being overweight and this can lead to a greater chance of hypertensions, cardiorespiratory problems and less muscle strength. So what can be done to help level out the balance?
Starting Off Right
For some people it might be the case that they read up on the best running shoes for men, grab a pair and hit the park. But jogging doesn’t suit everyone and sometimes can use too much energy when you have a job that uses a massive amount in the first place.
The first easy tip for meal times is to look at the content of what is in the food and aim to reduce a few key areas; for example aim for a meal that has less than 30% calories that come from fats or less than 7% of the fat coming from saturated fats.
Instead of eating one large meal, try having smaller meals more often, maybe every 2-3 hours if possible, so that you get a constant release of energy from the food. Keep a few healthy snacks to hand, even if you are traveling around the city to try to manage this.
Balance of food
Try to incorporate more heart-healthy sources of fat in your diet. These are thing such as avocado, olive oil, peanut oil, coconut and salmon. These including mono- and polyunsaturated fats as well as omega-3 fats that are the good fats.
This can also apply to the method of cooking; swap whole milk to skimmed milk or try using oil instead of fat. When picking your meat, aim for the leaner cuts where possible such as sirloin, flank steak and game meats if you can. If you are a pork fan, head for the boneless pork loin and take off the extra fat before you cook the meat.
Fruit and Vegetables
We all hear about five a day or similar ideas but the basics behind it is solid: incorporating more fruit and vegetables into the diet helps your health. The US Dept. of Agriculture recommended 2 cups of fruit and 2.5 cups of vegetables every day as they are low in calories and have lots of vitamins and minerals in them. Swap them around and eat different ones to get the maximum benefit.
All the really tasty stuff, like cookies and pies, all have a high amount of sugar in them so avoid eating them regularly. Sugar isn’t the best source of calories so try to aim for no more than 10% of daily calories coming from added sugar.
It can be hard to fit into the schedule but it is recommended that 150 minutes of moderate to high-intensity exercise should be undertaken each week. This is in addition to the exercise you get at work naturally. It can be hard to fit in, but in the long run, could make all the difference to your long-term health.