Saturday, March 31, 2012

A proper midnight shift diet

Hi Friends;
  As some of you know, I work midnight shift.  I like my job, for the most part, but I don't like the effect it has had on my body.  I don't sleep well at all, I eat poorly, and I can consume coffee in buckets only to still be sleepy. 
  One of my goals this year is to get a grip on my weight problem.  I'm about 100 pounds over weight, spread over a 6'5" body - not too terrible but still not very attractive or healthy.  A portion of that is due to the sleep problems and metabolism problems, but a great deal is due to very poor decisions as well.  So, as I begin to research this and try to find my way, I will post things now and again. Wish me luck.

I found the following on the web.  It's not my writing, but it seems good information.
Posted on March 24, 2012

For us midnight shifters, its often hard to come up with a meal that will satisfy us all night long and not leaving us with a stomach ache. The Center of Disease and Control states that 3rd shifters experience a higher rate of digestive problems than “normal people”. Well, why is this? The answer is that the body’s digestive system slows down at night, and this poses a problem when we eat greasy, fatty foods during our shift. These foods can trigger digestive problems such as heart burn or acid reflux. This is where it turns into a nasty cycle. Who relies on coffee or soda to stay awake during the shift? Who drinks this stuff the entire shift? The problem this creates is we are not tired when we get home. Add this to the heart burn and you’re in for a full day of broken sleep. The lack of sleep can cause an increased risk of Heart Disease, Diabetes and a decreased ability to fight off infections. This might be why we see more sick call outs from midnight shifters.

So what can we do?

Focus on Complex Carbohydrates and Vitamin D-Rich foods. It is obvious that we have less exposure to sunlight than everyone else, no, the florescent lights and computer monitors do not make up for this lack of Vitamin D.

Foods such as Oat Meal, Cereals, Milk…they are all high in Vitamin D. Eating foods high in Vitamin D will help your body produce the needed hormones to function properly and will also assist the bones with absorbing calcium. Complex Carbohydrates are high in fiber. Fiber is proven to improve digestion, stabilize your blood sugar, keep your energy at an even level all while keeping you satisfied longer. These carbs take longer to break down and will release a steady stream of energy for a longer time, lasting your entire shift.

It is suggested that you make your meals ahead of time, maybe at the beginning of the week. Separate them out in portion sized containers. Its all about portions. Also, pack some bottled water instead of sodas or drinks high in sugar. If you must have a soda or iced tea, pack a diet soda or unsweetened tea. Along with your meal, be sure to pack a healthy, light snack. AVOID THE VENDING MACHINE!!!

A list of some Complex Carbs






Brown Rice




Skim Milk




Dill Pickles

Low Fat Yogurt

Now, on to the exercise part…bla…

It is best to work out before your shift. Working out in the morning before going home will make it much more difficult to fall asleep. Find a gym with a 24 hour membership to join.

So, in conclusion…remember these things. No greasy foods, they mess up your digestive system, making it harder to sleep, giving you more health risks. Eat Complex Carbs and Vitamin D-Rich foods. NO coffee and NO sugar. Exercise before your shift and stretch and walk for a few minutes during your shift.

Incarceration and Debt

Hello friends;
  I can't imbed the video.  Please click on the link and watch it on CNN.

March 30th, 2012

By Fareed Zakaria, CNN

Something caught my eye the other day: Pat Robertson, the high priest of the religious right, had some startling things to say about drugs.
"I really believe we should treat marijuana the way we treat beverage alcohol," Mr. Robertson said in a recent interview. "I've never used marijuana and I don't intend to, but it's just one of those things that I think. This war on drugs just hasn't succeeded."
The reason Robertson is for legalizing marijuana is that it has created a prison problem in America that is well beyond what most Americans imagine.
"It's completely out of control," Mr. Robertson said. "Prisons are being overcrowded with juvenile offenders having to do with drugs. And the penalties - the maximums - some of them could get 10 years for possession of a joint of marijuana. It makes no sense at all."
He’s right. Here are the numbers: The total number of Americans under correctional supervision (prison, parole, etc.) is 7.1 million, more than the entire state of Massachusetts. Adam Gopnik writes in the New Yorker, "Over all, there are now more people under 'correctional supervision' in America...than were in the Gulag Archipelago under Stalin at its height."
No other country comes even close to our rates of incarceration. We have 760 prisoners per 100,000 people. Most European countries have one seventh that number (per capita, so it's adjusted for population). Even those on the high end of the global spectrum - Brazil and Poland - have only a quarter the number we do.
If you say this is some kind of enduring aspect of America's "Wild West" culture, you would be wrong. In 1980, our rates of incarceration were a quarter what they are now. What changed was the war on drugs and the mindless proliferation of laws that created criminal penalties for anything and everything. If you don’t believe me, listen to Pat Roberston again. Here's a quote:
"We here in America make up 5% of the world's population, but we make up 25% of jailed prisoners....We have now over 3,000 - the number must be might higher than that - but over 3,000 federal crimes, and every time the liberals pass a bill - I don't care what it involves - they stick criminal sanctions on it. They don't feel there is any way people are going to keep a law unless they can put them in jail.... So we have the jails filled with people who are white collar criminals.
In the past two decades, the money that states spend on prisons has risen at six times the rate of spending on higher education. In 2011, California spent $9.6 billion on prisons, versus $5.7 billion on higher education. Since 1980, California has built one college campus; it's built 21 prisons. The state spends $8,667 per student per year. It spends about $50,000 per inmate per year.
Why is this happening? Prisons are a big business. Most are privately run. They have powerful lobbyists and they have bought most state politicians. Meanwhile, we are bankrupting out states and creating a vast underclass of prisoners who will never be equipped for productive lives.

I never thought I'd say this, but God bless you, Pat Robertson

Hi Friends;

Gees!   I find myself in the same boat here.... I never would have thought I'd see Pat Robertson as a voice of reason and logic.  Go figure.
  One of the odd things I realized as I was reading this and thinking on what I wanted to say about it.... we in America, where "liberty" seems such a catch word, have made a practice and knee-jerk jovial reaction that includes the very elimination of said liberty.  Is crime acceptable?  Of course not.  I don't advocate it, but I also don't advocate the ruination of a life for it.  You've all heard my take on the so called "juvenile justice system".   Drug offenses, the big evil of the 80's and 90's, filled a lot of cells for a very long sentence.  And, if you are convicted of a sex offense, once you have done your time the state continues to punish you - in some cases for life.  What have we become?