FreightWaves Ratings cuts through the noise of freight technology product reviews to make you a smarter buyer

How To Improve Driver Health

Truck driving is an incredibly rewarding career, but many drivers find it hard to stay healthy with all of the time that they spend behind the wheel. With low levels of physical activity and less access to healthy food, it’s no wonder drivers’ health can suffer. 

Keep reading to learn all about the health issues that American truck drivers face as a result of their profession. You’ll also gain insight into what you can do to improve your health as a truck driver. 

Truck Driver Health Statistics

Did you know that according to the CDC, truck drivers are twice as likely to be obese than other U.S. workers? When you think of the sedentary nature of the job, it makes sense that drivers, on average, are heavier than workers in other industries. In fact, only one in four truck drivers surveyed by the CDC claims to get the recommended 30 minutes of exercise per day. 

But staying active and eating healthy is essential not only for drivers’ health but also for successfully doing their jobs. For example, if a truck driver develops a medical condition that affects their ability to drive, they could lose their CDL and, therefore, their career! 

Common Truck Driver Health Problems

There are a few common health problems facing truck drivers in the United States:

  • Obesity: Being overweight or obese increases your chance of developing life-threatening conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and high cholesterol. 
  • Smoking: Truck drivers in the US are twice as likely to smoke tobacco than other US workers, increasing their risk of cancer, emphysema, and stroke.
  • High Blood Pressure: The CDC finds that truck drivers have higher rates of hypertension than the average US worker, increasing their risk of heart disease and stroke.
  • Diabetes: Twice as many truck drivers have diabetes mellitus as the average working population, which they must closely manage to prevent severe health problems.
  • Mental Health: Due to the long hours and isolation, many truck drivers deal with mental health issues such as chronic loneliness, depression, sleep disorders, and anxiety.

Benefits of Staying Healthy as a Driver

Living a healthy lifestyle as a truck driver is not always easy, but it’s worth it. By staying active, eating well, and taking care of yourself, you can live a longer, happier life. 

A healthy truck driver is a better driver. By staying in peak condition, you are more alert to situations on the road and avoid burnout. 

5 Steps for Good Driver Health

Truck drivers may be more likely to suffer health issues than the average worker, but by no means does this mean they’re predisposed. On the contrary, you can be a happy and healthy driver by engaging in a healthy lifestyle, avoiding stimulants, getting enough sleep, taking the right supplements, and being vigilant about your health. 

Engaging in a Healthy Lifestyle

It may be more challenging to stay active and eat nutritious food on the road, but a few small things you can do will make a huge difference. 

Consider packing healthy snacks or meals with you on the road to reduce reliance on convenience store food. When you need convenience food, try grabbing some nuts or a pre-made deli sandwich rather than chips or fast food. 

While you probably won’t be making it to the gym while on the road, taking walks on your breaks or even doing a few squats can help get the blood moving. Don’t forget about your posture, too. Keep your seat high and avoid slouching. Your lower back will thank you!  

Avoiding Stimulants

With long hours and the need to stay alert ever-present for truck drivers, the temptation to drink too much coffee or energy drinks is strong. However, stimulants can disrupt your sleep cycle and contribute to headaches, dizziness, and anxiety, all conditions that make it difficult to focus on the road. 

Coffee and energy drinks make you more dehydrated, which is a problem most truck drivers already struggle with. So, be sure to drink more water and fewer energy drinks if you want to stay healthy and alert on the road. 

Getting Enough Sleep

Getting enough sleep is essential for truck drivers to do their jobs safely and stay healthy. To be fully alert for the next day, drivers should get seven hours of sleep, but many drivers find this difficult to achieve. 

Get the best sleep possible on the road by blocking all light and noise from coming into your cab. You can achieve this with blackout curtains and noise-canceling headphones. Also, try to avoid screens or eating too close to bedtime. Both the blue light from screens and digestion can prevent you from getting a full night’s sleep. 


With the strenuous physical demands of the job and less access to healthy foods, truck drivers can use supplements in their diets to get the vitamins they need. Vitamin C is great for truck drivers who may not have access to fresh fruits and vegetables. 

Plus, Vitamin A is great for eyesight. Omega-3 is great for heart health, while fiber helps with digestive health. Every truck driver has different needs and gaps in their diets, so ask your doctor which supplements are right for you.

Being Vigilant 

Staying on top of your health is crucial for your overall well-being and your success as a truck driver. Keep up with your yearly checkups and visit your doctor when you have concerns. 

Truck Driver Health and Wellness

Due to the nature of their profession, truck drivers often struggle with maintaining their health. Luckily, with a few lifestyle adjustments, you can stay healthy and happy throughout your long career in the transportation industry.   


How do drivers stay healthy?

Drivers can stay healthy by being proactive about exercising, eating well, getting enough sleep, and monitoring their health.

Is it possible to be healthy as a truck driver?

Yes, it’s possible to be a healthy truck driver if you are committed to living a healthy lifestyle through exercise, eating right, and getting enough sleep. 

How can truck drivers keep the weight off?

Truck drivers can stay lean by eating healthy meals, getting enough exercise, and staying hydrated.

We are excited to announce the launch of, a revolutionary resource designed to transform how consumers choose auto-shipping companies. Check it out today!

Where the best truck drivers go to find jobs nationwide!