Proper diet is a contributing factor to firefighter health and safety. According to the NVFC study “Addressing the Epidemic of Obesity in the United States Fire Service,” rates of overweight and obese individuals in the fire service are higher than those found in the general public, ranging from 73 to 88 percent of all firefighters (Haddock, Poston, & Jahnke, 2011).
Education is monumental. Courtney Fulton, a health and safety assistant in the IAFF Department of Occupational Health and Safety, writes:
Part of staying healthy is learning what to eat and sustaining a well-balanced diet. This in turn can help strengthen the immune system, boost energy levels, enhance recovery, and fuel the body for strenuous work. It can help firefighters and emergency responders become more physically capable of withstanding the stress and demands of the job and enhance their performance and quality of life. (2010)