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Millions Say Job Stress is Causing Them to Turn to Smoking, Alcohol and Junk Food

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If you’ve ever joked your job will be the death of you – you’re not alone.

Millions of workers say work is leaving them tired, stressed and fat, a survey found.

Many feel their work life is leading them to eating a poor diet, preventing them from doing enough exercise and leading to excess drinking and smoking.

The survey was carried out by the British Heart Foundation, which is now calling on employers to encourage staff to spend 10 minutes a day improving their lifestyle.

It found 40 per cent of people felt their job has had a negative impact on their health in the last five years.

And more than half of people felt they had become stressed as a result of their job.

More than a third said they think they have put on weight because of work, and nearly half said their job had driven them to eat more unhealthily.

And long hours mean many skip the gym: the survey also found 43 per cent of people said their work had caused them to exercise less.

Meanwhile, nearly a quarter said their job had led to them to drink more alcohol, while one in ten said it had been a trigger for them to smoke more.

The survey also found 60 per cent of employees regularly do unpaid overtime, with almost two in ten working more than five hours overtime a week.

The charity says the pressures of work leave employees with concerns for their future health, with 29 per cent fearing it could lead to high blood pressure and 21 per cent fearing a heart attack or heart condition.

The study was carried out as part of the charity’s Heart Month of February.

Lisa Young, from the British Heart Foundation said: ‘This survey is a stark reminder of just what happens when we don’t take our health at work seriously enough.

‘Millions of people say they are smoking more, exercising less and putting on weight because they’re not considering the impact their job is having on their health and wellbeing.

‘Behaviours like these can be extremely damaging, not just to your heart health but also to businesses.

‘From working with over with 9,500 organisations we know that the payoffs of making health at work a top businesses priority are too great to ignore.

‘Small steps can make a big difference to your health.

 

This story was written by Malden Davies.
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