Truckers and Food: How Much Does Nutrition Matter?
Truck drivers are the types of workers who are often thrust into unfamiliar territory as part of their job. Even if a person drives a route regularly, they may still lack a full understanding of the area and the amenities it offers.
This makes things a bit complicated when it comes to food. Truckers need to stay nourished on the road, but there are other factors to consider. How easy is it to find food in some areas? And how much should truck drivers focus on nutrition?
One of the main reasons the subject of nutrition has come up in the freight industry over the past several years is due to some very troubling statistics. Truck drivers are at a much higher risk of obesity and heart disease than people in other lines of work.
Why is this? There are a few factors which contribute to the trend. The first deals with truck drivers having limited options in terms of where they can find food. Not every truck driver has the time or funds to pack a healthy meal and bring it with them. Many drivers find themselves skipping over meal breaks just to make their destination.
Beyond this, there is the question of where a driver can find a bite to eat if they’re on the road. Some trucking apps exist to help drivers find other things they need, such as parking. While food could be treated in a similar way, drivers often find there are more unhealthy options than healthy ones.
With travel plazas, truck stops, and rest areas usually being built near or attached to fast-food restaurants, drivers often have to settle for unhealthy food just to keep on schedule.
The other factor that contributes to the trend of health problems in trucking isn’t related to the choice of restaurants, but the lifestyle truckers deal with in their line of work. Long hours in the cab means little exercise – and this can put drivers at risk.
There have been initiatives in the past to encourage drivers to get check-ups, exercise, and eat healthier. Several groups have worked to make these ends easier to achieve, and it is likely their efforts will continue until data shows the problem is lessening.