Weight Loss Support - Night shift got the best of me...

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01-05-2013, 06:50 AM
I am already so hungry when I work nights but a stressful night shift makes me want to eat eat eat....so I ate ate ate :(

01-05-2013, 06:57 AM
how about your sleeping schedule? i read somewhere that eating within 4 hours before sleeping is consider ok?

01-05-2013, 07:00 AM
I sleep good! I will be going to bed in about 4 hours. I just wish I didn't crave such bad things during the night !

01-05-2013, 07:25 AM
it takes time, be strong! dont let the crave consume u, and believe in yourself that u can do better

01-05-2013, 07:38 AM
Night shift killed me too. It's so hard!! I gained so much when I worked nights, but that had so much to do with my inability to get a really good restful sleep. Sleep is so important!

01-05-2013, 08:10 AM
I know what you mean: night shifts and healthy eating did not work well together for me! I found the only way to get through them healthily was to take healthy snacks with me to work and eat small amounts regularly. Stuff like a portion of nuts, fruit, cheese sticks and so on. Hope this helps :-)

01-05-2013, 09:33 AM
I work nights too. I have found it can be challenging as well not to want to eat. Simply boredum has an ill effect on my appetite. I bring lots of low cal snacks like fruits and soups to get me through. Coffee is also a temporary appitite suppressant. If you don't like coffee keep sipping tea or water as much as you can. You can always eat, it just depends on what you eat!

01-05-2013, 10:38 AM
I do bring lots of low cal snacks and sip decaf tea but I still feel so hungry. I'm so used to eating heavy greasy meals on nights. I can eat good on day shifts and days off but nights are hard!!!

01-05-2013, 02:47 PM
Hi I work night shift too and I did gain alot of weight from eating when tired to perk myself up and on the long ride home in rush hour traffic.
But now I still work nights and I have lost alot of weight .
I pay attention to my bodies cues and I stick to my plan.
Yes I have very broken up sleep and when I 'm off I switch back to a day schedule.
I try to work my shifts in a row so I only have I wasted day flipping back into a day schedule.
It is definitely harder to lose weight working nights but it also doable!
good luck hope you figure out a way to make it work for you,

01-05-2013, 03:10 PM
the same thing happens to me, my son requires someone awake 24/7 so I only sleep about 4 hours a day and the middle of the night is the worse when it comes to cravings.

01-05-2013, 03:22 PM
From other posts I've seen you're a proponent of eating more frequently but have you tried eating fewer larger meals?

When I started losing weight I tried the eating every 2-3 hours thing and because I was counting calories these "meals" ended up being very small and unsatisfying - leaving me always hungry.

Now I eat 2 times a day, sometimes three.

I'm not saying my way is the best for everyone but if you've never tried it - maybe you should.

I don't know how many night shifts you have in a given week but if your calorie goal for the day is 1600 you could eat 1000 of those calories during your night shift in a single meal - perhaps this would fill you up and take care of your hunger for the shift.

01-05-2013, 06:46 PM
It was only one post and I am not a proponent, it was just something I learned in school. It was simply a suggestion for that OP to try.

I eat bigger infrequent meals on nights already but I'm still craving that salt, sugar, and grease more than anything. Us girls always get McDonald's, or donuts an sometimes go out for a big greasy breakfast after. It's so hard to stay away from tradition!

01-05-2013, 07:22 PM
I am already so hungry when I work nights but a stressful night shift makes me want to eat eat eat....so I ate ate ate :(

In the most sincere way; is there a question here? Are you looking for suggestions or just venting a bit?

01-05-2013, 09:10 PM
That's tough. I hated working over nights years ago!

The only way I've found to beat recurring cravings, especially when they revolve around habit, or tradition as you mentioned, is just to buck up and white knuckle it until its over. I make sure I'm physically full, and I just make the rest happen.

I'm not sure if you were actually asking for advice, but there you have it anyway :D

Arctic Mama
01-05-2013, 11:41 PM
Adequate nutrition and willpower, that's all I can recommend. Eat a solid meal before your shift and then *decide* to not cheat. It's the only way to make it through - root out, on whatever level, you're giving yourself permission to eat off plan, and make a conscious choice to not accept that rationalization. If you won't do that, this problem will not be fixed by another means. Some strategies may help more or less (like eating a larger meal or packing plan-appropriate snacks) but in the end it still comes down to a choice you're making.

You can do this, just like any of us. It simply requires dedication and stubbornness - no magical way of eating can do all the work and keep you temptation free. Only you can choose to do that :)

01-06-2013, 04:07 AM
It was me both asking for advice and ranting a little. Thanks everyone!

01-06-2013, 11:11 AM
It sounds like it's more of a social tradition, like you mentioned.

If it's about social eating habits - then just factor those into your calories.

When the girls at my work bring in donuts, I make sure that I've had my healthy snack first, and then if I still want one, I'll take one and break it in half. Then I'll fill up my water bottle and drink it down because the sugar makes me really thirsty.

We get company lunch every so often, or we will go out to lunch out of the office. I get a salad, or a sandwich, or a pasta dish (when I've been eating very clean) that I can cut in half. I order water and tea, and I don't crave the soda anymore.

These are healthy choices that I make even though my coworkers are ordering the fries and eating the entire portion of their meal. My advice is this: try to separate their hunger and cravings from your own. You may not know what they've been eating prior to work - maybe they save their calories for work only, or maybe they're not watching their weight at all. Who knows?

All you can do is focus on your hunger. Awareness of my hunger - physical or mental/boredom - really helped me stop overeating. If you're eating healthy snacks and meals, drinking lots of water, then you shouldn't be physically hungry. If you find that you're eating out of social obligation/tradition, then focus on that and start taking small, healthier steps.

Case in point, my husband is on a bacon kick this morning. Lol, we've both been dieting, and he decided that he's earned his bacon fritatta. I'm not really hungry for bacon, so I made me own egg, black bean, veggie mix this morning. Even though I'm not hungry for it, I'm happy that I don't impose on his body's cravings.

While we don't have to go through this journey alone, it is solely up to us individually to find - and do - what works for us.

Good luck and let us know how you're doing!

01-06-2013, 01:45 PM
I have the same problem working the night shift. I always feel like i need to eat. I have been on the night shift for 5 years now, and just started to not take any money with me to work. That vending machine is just to tempting!

01-07-2013, 01:11 AM
I totally understand. I work overnight 3 times a week at a hospital, and I swear around half of my weight gain is due to those long, stressful nights. The best advice I've recieved is to just pack 1-2 high-protein snacks that will keep you full, satisfied, and energized. A protein bar or shake is perfect.