A new study emerging from the report of the Duke Clinical Research Institute in Durham, North Carolina presented by the lead researcher – Matthew Dupre states that the people who had recently lost their jobs are more likely to suffer a heart attack than their employed peers are. Researchers found that each successive job loss was tied to a higher chance of heart problems among older adults. However, it is still not yet confirmed that how unemployment itself might have caused extra heart attacks.
The possible reasons as per the study are the combination of stress, worsening lifestyle and poor management of chronic conditions without any health insurance. The other factors that play their role may be that those without job may be unable to control their high blood pressure or manage their diabetes, or rate of smoking. Still, Dupre says that it is too early to know for sure what is behind the link and it is too early to recommend ways to way off the heart problems among the recently unemployed.
This new study is based on the data collected from a large U.S. study of about 13,451 adults who were interviewed every other year for an average of 12 years about their health, lifestyle and life events such as employment and job loss. The participants of this study were aged 55-years old at the onset on average and about two-thirds were overweight or obese. One in seven was initially unemployed. The risk of heart attack is not seen in people who gave up the work voluntarily. Previous studies have also suggested that doing a stressful job may similarly increase the risk of having a heart attack.
The risk of heart attack was about 35% higher among unemployed than employed and the risk of having a heart attack was highest during the first year of unemployment. The study further revealed that the harmful effects of unemployment were consistent for men and women and major race or ethnic groups. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDCP) over 900,000 Americans have heart attack every year. To reduce the stress levels, physicians and health experts recommend doing some exercises and keeping oneself physically active and mentally engaged by undergoing home study, re-training, part-time charity work or helping their neighbors or any voluntary work that reduces these stress levels.