healtheo360 Wellness Blog

Work, Stress, and Diabetes

Posted on May 13, 2013 11:23:12 AM by healtheo360


Dr. Sharon Toker of Tel Aviv University has recently published an article in the Journal of Occupational Health Psychology regarding stress in the workplace. While the development of type 2 diabetes is mostly commonly associated with obesity, physical inactivity, and high blood pressure, however stress often has a significant impact on the likelihood to develop diabetes.

Dr. Toker’s research indicates that low levels of social support coupled with high levels of stress paint an accurate picture of long-term diabetes development in even the healthiest employee.

Dr. Toker and her research team’s 3 and half year long study of both female and male studies demonstrated that social work conditions have an extremely preventative or prognosticative effect on type 2 diabetes development. Research participants who went on record to state that they experienced high levels of social support in their workplace were twenty two percent less likely to develop diabetes over the duration of the study. However, those participants who characterized themselves as over or under worked were eighteen percent more likely to develop diabetes over the duration of the study. The study results were controlled for various variables such as age, physical activity level, BMI, and family history.

You don't want to see working populations have an increasing rate of diabetes. It's costly to both employees and employers, resulting in absenteeism and triggering expensive medical insurance," commented Dr. Toker in response to the grim but unsurprising findings.

To conduct the study, 5,843 patients who had visited health centers in Tel Aviv for employer sponsored physical examinations were recruited. During these initial physical examinations, no volunteers had any indication of diabetes and were all in good health.

After the patients were organized, examined, and interviewed, their health was monitored over a period of three and a half years. During this period, 182 volunteer participants developed diabetes reported Dr. Toker. Workload and environmental stress directly correlated with disease development across the board.

One exceptionally notable finding of the study highlighted that too small a workload was just as potentially harmful as an overloaded work schedule. Moderating stress in in the workplace is a process, but coupled with increased physical activity, proper diet, and utilization of diabetes support, can and will decrease the risk of development.

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