Losing your job makes you stressed? – Oh really?!

May 21, 2009

Good old Harvard, just goes to show that even the brightest and best seem to lack common sense. Would you have guessed that losing your job could affect your health? Think I will send them a copy of my ‘How To Cope Successfully With Stress’ book so they can see in black and white the relationship between stress and health.

This particularly researcher has ‘discovered’ that if you lose a job through no fault of your own then you are twice as likely to report developing a new ailment like high blood pressure, diabetes or heart disease over the next year and a half, compared to people who were continuously employed. More interesting to me, is the fact that these US statistics indicated that the risk was just as high for those who found new jobs quickly as it was for those who remained unemployed, leading me to believe their stress levels are just as high perhaps through uncertainty as to whether this job will last or not.

Being unemployed is stressful, and can cause serious physical and emotional responses which all affect health. Good habits like a healthy diet and regular exercise are often abandoned and comfort eating and increased alcohol and tobacco consumption are often evident. Though the research points up the obvious, if it can be leveraged so there is some more focus on the effect of the economic downturn on people’s health as well as the financial aspects then maybe it will be worthwhile.


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