AustinPUG Health

AustinPUG Health

Millions of Americans take up driving at a professional level. While some of you may enjoy the travel and the changing scenery, professional driving has been associated with a variety of health problems. Most experts blame irregular and long work hours for the crisis.

professional driver Common Health Issues Of Professional Drivers

Drivers are generally expected to drive for about 14 hours at a stretch. They get a ten hour break before the next shift. Truckers account for 12 percent of all work related deaths in the United States. They rarely have access to healthy food and hot meals. Many professional drivers cannot afford health insurance and do not have access to preventive care. Even if they have insurance, their work schedules do not allow them to keep medical appointments. This increases their risk of chronic illnesses.

Common health problems in professional drivers include:

Obesity – If you have driven on freeways and interstates in the United States, you may agree that most of them lack good restaurants and grocery stores. Truckers do not have access to three hot meals each day. They rely on packaged junk food throughout the day to satiate their appetite. At night, they eat a high-calorie meal before retiring to bed. Most of them do not have the time to exercise. In fact, only 8 percent of truckers exercise regularly when compared to 49 percent of the general population. This lifestyle is responsible for the disproportionately high rate of obesity in professional drivers across the country. Recent studies have indicated that close to 86 percent of professional drivers are obese or overweight.

Insomnia – Most truckers do not get enough sleep. Although the vehicles have sleeping quarters, they are not very comfortable. Truckers also need to find a place to park which may be several miles away. Traffic and weather conditions may also impact your sleep patterns.

Diabetes – Poor diet and lack of physical activity can also contribute to high blood sugar levels and diabetes. The condition is more prevalent in professional drivers when compared to other sections of the population. Lack of preventive care may further aggravate the condition and lead to serious complications.

High blood pressure – Junk food can lead to the accumulation of cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood vessels. These can contribute to the formation of blood clots which can in turn lead to high blood pressure and heart disease in professional drivers.

Arthritis – Professional drivers sit for several hours at a time. Poor posture often leads to arthritis and other joint problems. Lack of exposure to sunlight can also cause vitamin D deficiency in them which can impact bone strength and joint health.

Many trucking companies have responded to these health problems. They have stationed nurses and other healthcare professionals at prominent locations and encourage their employees and drivers to undergo regular medical evaluations to keep track of their health. Truckers can also benefit from regular breaks and at least one hour of physical activity per day. You can also pack some healthy snacks and meals. Remember to include fruits and vegetables in your diet everyday.

Many experts also believe that the Transportation Industry Health Promotion Research and Policy Planning Group and trucking companies should revisit their policies and help professional drivers improve their lifestyle and health.

About Author : Andy is a part-time blogger writing about driving, travel and healthy driving and travel! You can find his writing on the blog he writes at or his Facebook profile.
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