All the women out there, here's a good reason for you to work less and relax more. A new study published in the journal BMJ Open Diabetes Research and Care found that if women work only a few hours, it will lower the risk of type 2 diabetes. However, it appears to protect men from the disease.
The study analysed 7,065 Canadians over 12 years to look at the impact of working hours on diabetes risks, including both genders.
The results found were shocking. Men working long hours did not face an increase in the risk of diabetes while working more than 45 hours boosted a woman's risk by 63 percent.
The effect was only slightly lesser when smoking, exercise, alcohol intake and body-mass index were taken into account.
Why is there a difference?
Although the gender difference is unclear, it may involve what women do with their time off. The fact that women tend to take on them the bulk of household running outside of the office might also impact.
Study co-author Male Gilbert-Ouimet, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Toronto for 12 years said, "If you think about all the unpaid work they do on their off-hours, like household chores, for example, they simply do more than men, and that can be stressful, and stress negatively impacts your health."
She said it might be the same for men if they were in similar positions like women, but the fact that most men who work for long hours tend to be the best paid, in higher positions and lesser housework. Which only comes down to being stress-free happiness that gives protection.
Gilbert-Ouimet said, "Even when men and women do similar work, women earn less. Of course, that would impact women's health. Think about the stress of working harder and getting less for it."
"It's important for us to study women. They are still under-evaluated in most areas of health, and it's a real shame because if we look closer, there are still big inequalities."
According to the American Diabetes Association, more than 30 million Americans are affected by diabetes, with 1.5 million more getting diagnosed a year.
Previous studies are there to show men who work longer hours and in jobs that pay less face higher diabetes risk. There are studies which labelled this 'over-work-under-pay diabetes risk' as controversial.
However, additional research seems to point out that there is a connection between over-work and diabetes. There are four published studies on how long working hours affect one's risk - and none were done on with men and women.
Dr. Gilbert-Ouimet and her team worked on this study which split the data into four sets based on the time worked including the unpaid hours. Factors like gender, age, race, marital status, children, the place they lived, whether the job was active or desk-based, health issues, and other lifestyle factors were taken into account. Over the time those people were analyzed, 10 percent of them developed type 2 diabetes. Obese, older people and men accounted for most of the diagnoses.
Dr. Gilbert-Ouimet is looking on to study women who drink, smoke, and overeat than men due to longer working hours coupled with housework.