Eating on the Night Shift - page 2

I recently began working full time night shift again after several years, and work three twelve hour shifts a week, 7p-7a. I am having a problem with my eating pattern since I began staying up all... Read More

  1. by   ICURN1028
    When I used to work night shift I would wake up around 5:30pm, go to work, and have dinner (full meal that I would bring from home) between 9-11pm depending on how stable everything was at that time. Then around 2-3am I'd have a snack (nuts, fruit with PB, deli meat/cheese) to hold me over. I'd usually get home by 8am and eat a small bowl of cereal/milk and then head to bed. I agree with keeping yourself hydrated no matter what shift you work! I found it easier to transition back to "life on days" if I ate a dinner at work, snack in the early AM to hold me over, and "breakfast" before heading to bed. Snickers is absolutely delicious but a protein/complex carb snack will definitely be a better option!
  2. by   caffeinatednurse
    When I worked 7p-7a, I usually ate "breakfast" around 5:30pm (after waking), then my "dinner" around midnight. Around 3am, I would have a protein-filled snack and a small source of caffeine (like a small cup of coffee) to stave off the dreaded 4-5am wave of fatigue. If the unit was a mad house, I would have "dinner" around 2am and eat a snack on the way home. I carried a large thermos that I filled with ice water with me to remind myself to drink plenty of fluids. I still lost tons of weight, though. That's the only time I've ever went from a medium-sized scrub to a small-sized scrub in such a short period of time.

    I'm going back to 7p-7a shift later this month. I will probably keep the same eating habits, but add protein shakes into my routine this time.
  3. by   runsonsyrup
    I make sure I eat a healthy meal (salad with some protein or an egg scramble) just before heading in. I bring snacks because my stomach can't handle a full meal overnight. I bring carrots/hummus, granola bar, greek yogurt, a pack of oatmeal with peanut butter, some fruit, a bag of cereal, and/or a sandwich. Basically, I nibble all night long. When I get home, I'm always more sleepy than hungry, so I go right to bed and don't eat again until I wake up. This works pretty well for me, but I have become somewhat of a candy-holic during the night shift and find myself popping Sour Patch Kids and Skittles to keep my mouth occupied and stay awake. It's not the greatest habit, but I'm also not chugging coffee like many of my coworkers do.
    I guess I should add that I'm pregnant and the constant caloric stream is pretty much a necessity these days, but I eat in a similar way when I'm not pregnant, too.