I often talk to you about the dangers of circadian disruption. So by now, I trust you’re well aware of how lethal working the night shift can be… especially for your cardiometabolic health.
But that doesn’t mean your average office worker is exempt from harm. In fact, recent research suggests that daytime workaholics could be setting themselves up for disaster, too, if they aren’t careful…
Long days, hidden dangers
For this new study, Canadian researchers recruited more than 3,500 white-collar office workers from Quebec. (Participants were civil servants, primarily working in insurance.)
Researchers followed the employees for half a decade, performing tests after one year, three years, and finally, at five years. These tests included multiple blood pressure readings in the morning, with additional readings from a monitoring device every 15 minutes throughout the workday.
Nearly one in five workers had sustained hypertension—even with some already taking medications for it. (For this study, average readings ranging from 135/85 mmHg to 140/90 mmHg and above were considered high.)
In addition, more than 13 percent had “masked hypertension”—the type of high blood pressure that routinely goes undiagnosed, because readings are normal at appointments, but elevate later.
But let’s talk about the most important finding here: Compared with their coworkers who clocked fewer than 35 hours a week…
- People who worked 49 hours or more weekly faced a 70 percent higher risk of masked hypertension, and a 66 percent higher risk of sustained hypertension.
- People who worked between 41 and 48 hours weekly faced a 54 percent higher risk of masked hypertension, and a 42 percent higher risk of sustained hypertension.
And this was after accounting for age, gender, education level, job strain, smoking status, body mass index (BMI), and other key factors.
Of course, there are a number of other stressors that could potentially contribute to any employee’s individual risk. But one thing remains certain: Both masked and sustained hypertension point the way to heart disease.
Is telework making things worse?
Now, you might be wondering why I’m sharing this research with you now, when so many offices have shut down and gone remote due to the ongoing pandemic. But really, the answer should be obvious.
Working from home, as so many Americans are doing right now, may take the stressors of rush hour traffic off the table—but for a lot of employees, it adds a whole mess of new obstacles. Especially for working parents.
In fact, data collected during the recent COVID-19 lockdowns showed that employees’ workdays were actually longer from home—by a full 49 minutes.
So, start setting healthy work/home life boundaries. Perhaps that means physically closing the door to your at-home office after a certain time—or shutting down your computer altogether. Whatever you need to do to ensure you don’t overtax yourself and sabotage your health. And that, of course, includes keeping your heart health in check—especially your blood pressure.
Luckily, you don’t need to fall down a rabbit hole of needless (and ultimately, dangerous) medications to help keep your heart health in check. As you know, I’ve always believed that it’s better to focus on lowering high blood pressure as a whole, safely and significantly, without a specific target in mind.
That’s exactly why I’ve developed my very own all-natural plan to prevent and reverse America’s biggest killers—high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke. In fact, my Ultimate Heart-Protection Protocol incorporates diet, supplement, and lifestyle recommendations to keep your blood pressure in a range that’s healthy for you. To learn more about this innovative, online learning tool—or to enroll today—click here now.
“Long work hours at the office linked to both regular and hidden high blood pressure.” Science Daily. 12/19/2019. (sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/12/191219074644.htm)
“The Pandemic Workday Is 48 Minutes Longer and Has More Meetings.” Bloomberg, 08/03/2020. (bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-08-03/the-pandemic-workday-is-48-minutes-longer-and-has-more-meetings)