Avoiding and combating common cooking aches and pains
Spending time in the kitchen is one of the more rewarding experiences in life. Whether cooking or baking for yourself or someone else, the feeling of creating something for someone to enjoy has a kind of magic associated with it.
However, spending time in the kitchen can also cause you a bit of pain. Constantly leaning over pots and pans, bending and turning yourself to pick things up and pour, the constant stirring required to make a great sauce; these things can have a strain on your body. For many, though, the pain is absolutely worth it.
Fortunately, there are ways to combat these issues, if not prevent them from occurring at all. Let’s take a look at some common issues associated with cooking and see if we can’t find a solution.
Chopping, slicing, dicing, stirring, seasoning; each of these requires the use of your hands, and that can definitely take its toll. As a sufferer of carpal tunnel syndrome, I can speak to this from experience. I’ve lost count of the number of times my hand has gone numb while I’m attempting to cut up vegetables for dinner.
Full-on carpal tunnel is a pretty bum diagnosis as it’s not something which easily fixed, but it can be managed. Using something like a wrist brace, or just giving your hand time to rest, can help increase the amount of time you’re able to keep stirring and slicing your way to deliciousness.
In a worst-case scenario, surgery can be performed which can help. The best bet, however, is to take precautions against letting it become too bad. If you start feeling strangeness in your hands, talk to a doctor and see how they can help. They may recommend a brace or even some form of steroid or other medication to help strengthen the muscles and such in your hand.
A carpal tunnel syndrome diagnosis doesn’t have to be the end of your cooking career, but it certainly can be if you don’t take care of the problem.
In some ways, cooking can be as detrimental to your posture as sitting at a desk all day. If you’re constantly leaning over to taste and smell things, your back is going to feel it. Changing your habits can go a long way toward stopping this problem. Forcing yourself to stand up straight when doing your work is a great first step.
Should that be difficult, however, there are tools out there to help. Back braces can be a fantastic method of keeping your spine aligned. If that sounds like something for you, take a look at some of the reviews from Perfect Postur.
The biggest complaint I hear from people I know in the food industry is regarding the pain they feel in their feet. Cooking is not something you can really do while sitting, unless you’ve got a short stove or a tall chair. Even then, sitting doesn’t give you the mobility you need if something needs to be done quickly.
Special insoles can be a huge help for anyone who is constantly on their feet. The materials companies use these days are fantastic at helping to distribute the weight across your entire foot, all while keeping it nice and cool and comfortable.
Alternatively, you can also purchase mats which will sit on the floor and do a similar job to insoles without having to actually wear insoles. These are quite common in restaurant kitchens or at cashier stands in retail stores.
Remember, one of the neatest things about cooking at home is how healthy you are able to make your food, so consider keeping the rest of your body in good condition, as well. Don’t let yourself get too fatigued or worn out and you’ll find you’ll be able to keep cooking for as long as you’d like.