I know that pulling all nighters is bad, but it is something that I have to do every once in a while. So, given that it's a necessity, how can I minimize the damage? Here are some initial ideas:
BCAAs to protect lean body mass.
Omega 3 to maintain cognitive function.
Minimal food to enjoy potential fasting benefits.
Zero carbs to enjoy ketosis benefits.
I'm not looking for explanations of why sleep is important; I already know that. Rather, I want ideas, speculative or informed, and related info and opinions on what I should and should not do in the context of unavoidable all nighters.
I work an overnight shift in the jail ever 56 days for a 56 day cycle. The best I have found for minimal damage to my physical and mental well being is to stay on track with your diet, but do it at night. I get home at 7am and sleep as much as possible. If I can't sleep, I am sure not to eat until my normal 4pm breakfast. I used to gain weight every time I worked this shift, but this has stopped all of that. This also gives me a chance to do my workouts in a fasted state, and I have read that this can be good thing too.
I used to work the graveyard shift. It messes up your metabolism. I can't remember a single coworker who was not overweight. I suspect many were diabetics. I'm suspicious that I may have developed insuin resistance during the period I worked from midnight to eight.
Another problem is it messes up your circadian rhythm and sleeping. I can remember, no matter how much sleep you had, you still become sleepy at 4 am, when you have to fight off falling asleep. That probaly is chipping away at your longevity.
Also, you can feel the fluid from your body being depleted. All my coworkers felt that way: the disappearnce of fluid from their intestines and stomach in the morning hours. I don't know how much damage that was doing to my body, but it may have been considerable. I'm now a T2 diabetic with multiple autoimmune issues.