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Blue Collar Workers Get Healthy Too

Men like to work. They like to do hard, satisfying work. Oh sure, a few are lazy, but I personally believe that they are most likely stuck and would rather work at something they like doing. Everyone gets stuck sometimes.

Blue collar workers work.
Blue Collar

Blue collar workers work. They solve problems and think. They pick up something with their hands and fix or build.

One thing they have going for their health is that they tend to be active. They lift heavier and move their bodies more than other men.

But they have health challenges unique to their life-styles. I know because three of my sons are blue collar workers and they can struggle to eat nutritiously.

For instance, many blue collar workers work in the field. Plumbers, electricians, carpenters might never know where they are going to be from day to day. When you are out, away from the office or shop, it’s easy to go out to eat.

This is a challenge for sure. And the reason it’s hard is because men are fighting an unseen battle with chemists and corporate bean counters. These white-lab coated people spend their days puzzling out how to manufacture food that will taste so good you want to eat the whole bag every time. Also, they want to make sure that bag will last on the shelf for years. All at the expense of the American worker.

Blue collar workers have to stop trusting these white coats who don’t care about America’s health. I know that sounds bitter. But here’s the thing, we must be responsible for our own health. That begins with understanding what goes into our mouths.

Really, guys in lab coats are just trying to make a buck. So I don’t mean to be so hard on them. It’s my responsibility to know my food.

The easy way to get a good understanding of our food is to eat whole foods, real foods. If it’s something that was manufactured and sealed in a package, don’t eat it.

If it grew in a garden, eat it. If your or your friend raised it and slaughtered it, eat it.

Maybe it’s not quite that simple, but it gives us a baseline idea. Sure, some things that grew in an orchard or on a farm are sprayed with chemicals. Some of those can be cleaned up, some not so much.

Here’s a list of the Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen:

Eating food that actually looks like it did when it was grown is a good place to start.

These foods are naturally filled with nutrition. Eat beef, pork, and chicken that have been fed a nutritious diet (read NOT CORN). Eat fish (especially salmon, herring and sardines). Animals that haven’t been pumped with drugs and hormones.

Do it when you can. It’s a process. And it costs more to eat this way, at first. It’s an up front cost that pays off in health. Less time in the doctor’s office. More time doing the things we want to do.

So pack a lunch. Pack it with fruit, salad, and meat or fish. Maybe eat some nuts. Or a high quality home-made soup. Everyone has to figure out what works for themselves, sometimes with the help of a health professional (which I am not).

See, McDonalds and Wendy’s are just trying to make a buck. It’s not their job to make sure you stay healthy.

Know which food is high quality, excellent for you. Food you love. Not chips, not sodas. Not restaurant foods.

It might take a while to make it work for you. Keep leaning toward health. Start by figuring out how to pack a lunch. And think about how you’re going to react when everyone is all going out to lunch and they give that look and say, “Come on…” At some point, you have to decide. Sometimes, it means eating by yourself. Sometimes it means ordering the healthiest food on the menu.

I deal with this challenge. At my work, people bring doughnuts and kindly offer them to everyone. I don’t eat them. But I’m nice about it. Their feelings are important too. I always tell them that I have a weird diet and I can’t eat them. They understand.

It was haarrd to turn them down at first. Now, it’s easy.

In fact, that brings me to another point. When you are eating natural, whole foods, you naturally limit added sugar. And the more you stay away from added sugars, then less you want them (I promise).

It takes about two weeks for most people to cut the cravings. Then, at about the 30 day mark, the breads, pastas, and beers lose their draw.

Wait, beer? Right. Beer is filled with sugars. Lots of other alcohol is too. I switched to home-made tequila drinks. And some of the hard seltzers too. I use sparkling water to make low sugar drinks.

I’m not telling you that you should drink tequila, just that you don’t have to drink sugar filled alcohol. By the way, it’s not ever a good idea to get drunk. Just saying.

This is what it comes down to: put good things in your mouth. For many people that one change brings weight-loss and greater health. Here’s some research on that:

Okay, maybe you figured this out… I haven’t addressed everything my earlier post said I would. I got long winded about eating nutritious food.

It happens.

I’ll talk about rest and creativity later. Here’s the sneak peak. Get enough rest. Be creative. You’ll be happier and healthier.

Talk to me about your ideas and questions. Let’s make this a conversation.

May your year be filled with love and beauty.


Published inBlue Collarnutrition

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