DiversityNursing Blog

Tips For Staying Healthy As A Nurse

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Tue, Mar 06, 2018 @ 12:06 PM

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Nurses are committed to caring for their patients, but unfortunately many struggle to take care of themselves. In fact, Nurses are more likely to be overweight, have higher levels of stress and get less than the recommended hours of sleep. Delivering health care is a stressful role, both physically and mentally. Therefore, it is imperative you take your own health into consideration.
 
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Nurses and health care workers experience the highest rate of non-fatal occupational injuries and illnesses of any sectors, including construction. As mentioned, both your mental and physical health are important. Here are some tips to help you improve your overall health.

Find a work buddy

In any job, especially Nursing, it’s easier to cope with emotional stress when you have a work buddy to help you through tough shifts. You can vent to your friend, share your frustrations and they understand what you're going through. If you haven’t found your best friend at work yet, don’t worry, you will.

Eat well

Most Nurses work in a fast-paced environment and are often short on time, which can lead to relying on fast food that is high in fat, sodium, sugar, and additives. Look for ways to add more lean proteins, fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Try meal prepping for the week.

Meditate or find a quiet space

Try to find peace for at least 10 minutes in a quiet room or in a quiet place outside with no electronic distractions. Ten minutes of quiet is longer than you think, but you'll feel more refreshed afterwards. Just take a moment to focus on breathing and calming positive thoughts to boost you through draining times.

Sleep
 
You know it's important to get sufficient sleep prior to your shift, but it’s not always easy to get it. Do your best to get your sleep because many bad things happen when you don’t sleep properly. You might overeat, feel unhappy and impatient, your energy levels will slowly deplete, and it’s possible you could make mistakes. For night shift workers who need to sleep during the day, try using ear plugs to drown out noise and face masks to block the light. White noise machines could be helpful too.
 
Exercise
 
Some jobs require you to sit for long periods at a computer, so try standing every hour for a few minutes. Walk up and down a flight of stairs, stretch your legs and find workouts tailored for long shifts.
 
What do you do to stay healthy? We'd love to hear your ideas and tips as they could be helpful to your colleagues. Please comment below!

 

Topics: healthy lifestyle

Can Fast Food Hinder Learning in Kids?

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Mon, Dec 29, 2014 @ 10:28 AM

FSF050 resized 600A steady diet of fast food might hurt your child in the classroom, a new study finds.

Kids who frequently ate fast food in fifth grade lagged behind by eighth grade, said researchers who reviewed questionnaires and test scores of more than 8,500 U.S. students.

"The largest effects were found for the kids who reported daily consumption of fast food," said study leader Kelly Purtell, assistant professor of human sciences at Ohio State University. "On average they were scoring three or four points lower than the kids who did not report eating fast food at all in the past week." 

The researchers compared academic test scores in reading, math and science for fifth and eighth grade and looked at the students' responses to food questions on a national survey. 

On average, test scores increased 16 to 19 points, depending on the subject, Purtell said.

But kids who ate fast food the most had test-score gains of up to 20 percent less than those who never ate fast food, she found.

The study was published online this month in Clinical Pediatrics

More than two-thirds of the students surveyed reported some fast-food intake. And one in five had eaten at least four fast-food meals in the previous week, the survey found.

The amount of fast food consumed corresponded with eighth-grade scores, even after researchers took into account for physical activity, TV watching, income levels and school characteristics, Purtell said.

The proliferation of fast food is already a concern because of America's obesity epidemic.

However, the study can't prove the fast food caused the lower scores, only that the two were linked, Purtell noted. Still, other research has linked high-sugar and high-fat diets with an adverse effect on learning processes requiring attention, she said.

Although researchers can't explain the tie-in for sure, it's also possible that those with a fast-food habit may not get the nutrients needed for good learning, she suggested.

Experts aren't recommending you ban all fast foods on the basis of this one report, but they do advise moderation.

"It is premature to presume that frequent fast-food consumption will compromise one's later academic functioning," said Dr. Andrew Adesman, chief of developmental and behavioral pediatrics at the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Children's Medical Center of New York, who wasn't involved in the study.

"Although this study found an association between frequently eating fast food and weaker academic performance a year later, we cannot be certain that the observed differences were due to nutritional factors and not other variables," he said.

Still, it's advisable to "encourage kids to go slow when it comes to fast food" to preserve health and good nutrition, Adesman added.

More research is needed, he said, to determine what impact fast food has on students' learning potential.

In the meantime, Purtell said, "I don't think the occasional fast meal is anything to worry about." Once a week or less might be a good goal, she suggested.

Source: www.nlm.nih.gov

Topics: health, nursing, healthcare, children, diet, learning, physicians, medical, kids, food, fast food, harmful, healthy lifestyle, lifestyle choices, classroom, youth, pediatrics

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