Avoid high-iron foods if you work graveyard shift

A new research has revealed that graveyard shift workers should avoid eating high-iron foods at night so that they don't disrupt the circadian clock in their livers.

ANI| Updated: Oct 22, 2014, 12:18 PM IST

Washington: A new research has revealed that graveyard shift workers should avoid eating high-iron foods at night so that they don't disrupt the circadian clock in their livers.

Researchers at University of Utah believe that disrupted circadian clocks are the reason that shift workers experience higher incidences of type 2 diabetes, obesity and cancer.

The body's primary circadian clock, which regulates sleep and eating, is in the brain, but other body tissues also have circadian clocks, including the liver, which regulates blood glucose levels.

Lead author Judith A. Simcox said that iron is like the dial that sets the timing of the clock and discovering a factor, such as iron, that sets the circadian rhythm of the liver may have broad implications for people who do shift work.

According to the senior author Donald A. McClain, when a shift worker eats foods high in iron at night it could exacerbate the lack of synchronization between the clock in the liver and the main one in the brain and by tending to flatten the circadian variation of metabolism, high iron in tissues may also interfere with the normal day to night fluctuations associated with a healthy metabolic system.

The study is published online in Diabetes.