The ‘Sailing Doctor’ returns to our blog! This week Dr. Jean-Yves Chauve gives us advice on what type of food to eat while sailing.
You may have already heard of Dr. Chauve as he is well-known for specializing in providing remote medical assistance to sailors and boat racers. He has been involved in several high-profile cases in which he aided racers via telephone to avoid dangerous health situations.
When at sea, we use a lot of energy. The constant motion of the boat, the wind and maneuvering a sailboat may require nearly 5,000 calories in 24 hours.
To compensate for these losses it is very important to eat enough . This is not always easy especially when you are feeling seasick, or when weather conditions make it impossible to cook.
However, freeze-dried meals such as those eaten by offshore racers will make it easier to eat hot food. Just boil water in a kettle, pour the hot water into the bag and wait a few minutes for the food to re-hydrate.
Food for Short Trips
Sandwiches provide a good amount of energy and are well-balanced.
Food for Longer Trips
When each sailor takes it in turn to navigate, it is best to eat at the end of your shift before going to bed.
Calories used for digestion are also included in the amount of energy needed each day and eating at the end of the day will make food energy available to the muscles when you wake.
What to Avoid
Avoid eating simple sugars such candy bars, as much as possible. Contrary to advertising, they rather promote sleep and can actually make you feel drowsy.
Last but not Least…
Finally, remember that you should drink water regularly throughout the day. With the wind and sun, dehydration can creep up on you unexpectedly and affect the physical and mental abilities.
Read more of Dr. Chauve’s sailing advice in these two previous blog posts: