Three ways to avoid substance abuse and still keep up at work

10 October 2018 - 07:00 By Thango Ntwasa
Dehydrated by substance abuse.
Dehydrated by substance abuse.
Image: 123RF/lacamerachiara.

From corporate duties to entertainment, many hard workers have a difficult time keeping up with their lifestyle and the expectations placed on them. Many turn to drug abuse or risky alternatives that often end in addiction, or even death.

It’s never a great idea to keep up with work demands by abusing drugs, but how else can one maintain the pace?

Dietician Lila Bruk shares her tips on natural ways to survive crazy work schedules.

Lila Bruk’s top three tips:

  • Eat up to five or six smaller meals per day: This will help limit the number of unhealthy snacks you consume.
  • Stay hydrated with six to eight glasses of water per day: This helps keep your energy levels up.
  • Take a brisk lunchtime walk: Exercise is a natural energy booster.

Other than these options, fellow dietician Ashleigh Caradas advises replacing sugary snacks and drinks with fruit.

“The problem with too much sugar or stimulants is that it is only short-lived energy and you will always need more to stay awake. People using narcotics to stay awake at work will be heading into serious trouble if this is not addressed,” says Caradas.

She attributes this unhealthy dilemma to the high number of workers who struggle to stay on top of things because of a lack of time, which forces them to search for a quick fix.

“The problem is the relief is short-lived and not sustainable. Caffeine and sugar can also be considered as drugs, as they do have an addictive nature. Alcohol abuse is also a big problem as many people use alcohol to wind down after a stressful day,” says Caradas.

Another issue is the use of prescription medication such as tranquillisers and sleeping pills. “In some cases, people might also be abusing uppers like amphetamines to stay awake and meet deadlines.”

Caradas’ ultimate advice for stressed workers is to ensure they make time for rest and restoration. “Good food, sufficient rest and a positive attitude are the best ways to stay fresh.”


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