One Hour of Overtime a Week Raises Your Risk for Heart Disease

Do you love working overtime?

A team of scientists from The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston has recently found that working more than 45 hours a week over the course of a decade increases your risk for heart disease.

working overtime

To come up with the conclusion, the scientists analyzed data on more than 1,900 participants involved in a long-term follow-up study of health and work. The scientists then determined the relationship between cardiovascular disease and work hours.

Their findings revealed that angina, heart failure or coronary heart disease, stroke or high blood pressure were found to have happened in 43 percent of the participants. The scientists also discovered that the risk for these cardiovascular events raised by one percent for each additional hour worked per week. However, the findings were only significant for those who worked full-time.

For part-time workers who averaged more than 30 hours a week, the risk raised as weekly hours approached 40. The study also found that the risk decreased again between 40 and 45 hours per week. But at about 46 hours per week, increasing work hours was found to be “progressively” linked with elevated risk of cardiovascular disease.

Moreover, people who worked 55 hours per week had 16 percent higher risk of cardiovascular disease compared to those who worked 45 hours per week for a decade or longer. Meanwhile, people who worked 60 hours per week had a 35 percent elevated risk compared to people who worked 45 hours.

“In general, we found that the risk of [cardiovascular disease] increased as the average weekly working hours increased, above a certain threshold,” said study author Dr. Sadie Conway.

The Disadvantages of Working Overtime

Some people love the idea of working overtime as it equates to unexpected cash. However, working overtime for a long period can take a toll on your quality of life as well as health. Here are some of the disadvantages of working overtime according to chron.com.

  1. It can leave you burned out at work.
  2. Working overtime may leave you budget dependent on the extra cash.
  3. It reduces your quality of life.
  4. It can lead to ulcer, stomach problems, depression, breast cancer and cardiovascular diseases.
  5. It increases your risk for occupational injury.