Job stress increases heart attack risk, happy marriage may offset side effects
Chronic stree promotes heart attacks, new research reveals. But if you''re in a happy marriage, that risk may actually be offset.
What happens if your job sucks and your marriage is on the rocks at the same time? You''re in dangerous territory when it comes to heart health. Get on an exercise program and start improving your heart health immediately by taking supplements like astaxanthin and eating foods like garlic and healthy oils (olive oil, fish oils, flax oil, etc.). Be sure to read the related article, New Research In Mind-Body Medicine Shows That Social Interaction Accelerates Healing.
- On-the-job stress can increase your blood pressure, adding to your risk of having a heart attack or stroke, according to evidence from two new studies by Heart and Stroke Foundation researchers.
- One of the studies suggests that a happy marriage may offset some of the negative effects, and the other has found that social solidarity among workers goes some way to lessening stress.
- Employees from a large Toronto teaching hospital and from public organizations in Quebec City offered up their working lives -- and blood pressures -- for detailed analysis.
- The results were presented at the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress 2004, hosted by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada and the Canadian Cardiovascular Society.
- The spousal findings come from Heart and Stroke Foundation researcher Dr. Sheldon Tobe of Sunnybrook and Women''s College Health Sciences Centre, Toronto.
- Dr. Tobe says that feelings of helplessness and lack of decision making powers in the face of escalating demands by supervisors and employers is a significant contributor to workers'' high blood pressure.
- Over the 24 hour period, job stress was associated with increased systolic blood pressure.
- "But we also found that spouses who enjoy each other''s company actually modulate their blood pressure down when they are together, away from work," says Dr. Tobe.
- The authors found that although stress resulting from job strain makes a significant contribution to high blood pressure and heart disease, companionship of fellow workers significantly reduces stress levels.
- "Job strain is a combination of high levels of psychological demand at a rapid pace coupled with low decision latitude - a feeling of having no control, no empowerment, no opportunity to use one''s skills," says Dr. Milot.
- We have found that the social support of colleagues or supervisors can significantly modify this," he says.
- Our mission is to improve the health of Canadians by preventing and reducing disability and death from heart disease and stroke through research, health promotion and advocacy.
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