What kind of jobs keep you sane

Being physically active at work does not keep you healthy - on the contrary

Recreational physical activity has been linked to health benefits, and occupational physical activity increases the risk of cardiovascular incidents and death. This is shown by a study published in the European Heart Journal.

Previous studies Research has shown that physical work is associated with an increased risk of heart disease and mortality. However, it could not be fully clarified whether this was due to the nature of the work - or because the employees had an unhealthy lifestyle or a low socio-economic status, for example a low level of education.

Cardiovascular incidents over ten years

The current study included 104,046 women and men aged 20 to 100 years from the Copenhagen General Population Study with basic measurements from 2003 to 2014. The participants completed questionnaires about activities in their leisure time and at work. Each activity was rated as low, medium, high, or very high.

During a median follow-up of ten years, there were 9,846 (9.5 percent) deaths from all causes and 7,913 (7.6 percent) major cardiovascular events, fatal and non-fatal myocardial infarction, fatal and non-fatal stroke, other coronary death.

High leisure activity, low risk of death

Compared to less physical activity in leisure time, after deducting age, gender, lifestyle, health and education, moderate, high and very high activity in leisure time was associated with a risk of death reduced by 26 percent, 41 percent and 40 percent, respectively it continues in a press release from the European Society of Cardiology.

Compared to low recreational activity, moderate, high, and very high recreational activities were associated with 14 percent, 23 percent, and 15 percent reductions in cardiovascular risk, respectively.

Being physically active at work doesn't keep you healthy

In contrast to low physical activity at work, high and very high activity were associated with a 13 percent and 27 percent increased risk of death, respectively. Compared to low activity at work, high and very high scores were associated with a 15 percent and 35 percent increased risk of cardiovascular incidents, respectively. That means: Being physically active at work doesn't keep you healthy - on the contrary.

Relaxing after hard work is risky

Study author Prof. Andreas Holtermann from the National Research Center for the Working Environment in Copenhagen: "Many people with manual jobs believe that their physical activity at work allows them to stay fit and healthy and therefore relax when they get home. Unfortunately our results suggest that this is not the case. "

In addition, people felt tired after cleaning 10,000 steps or standing in a production line for seven hours, which is an additional barrier to physical compensation in their free time.

What distinguishes work and leisure activity

"A brisk 30-minute walk will benefit your health by increasing your heart rate and improving your cardiorespiratory fitness," said Holtermann. In comparison, physical activity at work usually does not increase the heart rate enough to improve fitness.

"In addition, work that involves lifting for several hours a day increases blood pressure for many hours, which is associated with the risk of heart disease, while short-term, intense leisure-time physical activity only increases blood pressure for a short time," adds the scientist.

Making professional activity healthier

Holtermann's vision is to reorganize professional activities in such a way that they mimicked the beneficial aspects of leisure activities.Various approaches are being tried out, for example switching between workstations on a production line so that employees have a healthy mix of sitting, standing and standing during a shift Achieve lifting.

In another study, educators play with children rather than just watching them so that they both increase their heart rate and improve their fitness. "Societies need adults with adequate health and fitness who can work longer as the retirement age increases. We need to find ways to make active work good for health."

Photo: Adobe Stock / photographee.eu

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