How Punching a Clock Helps Your Heart

Medically reviewed in November 2022

If you just can't seem to break away when your shift ends, make it a mandate for your heart.

The paperwork can wait. Your heart can't. Research shows that people who log lots of overtime may be more likely to experience a heart attack or other signs of serious heart problems. Scary stuff, yeah?

The Work-Life Balance
And it turns out that the added risk didn't necessarily boil down to lifestyle. For the people who routinely put in 3 to 4 hours of overtime every day and were more likely to have ticker troubles, it wasn't because they avoided fruit, vegetables, and the gym. They still did the right thing by their bodies. (Read this article to find out how many million vacation days Americans throw away each year.)

Back to Basics: Rest and Recovery
So what was the goocher with working too hard? Researchers noted that the hard workers got less sleep and tended to come to work even when they were sick. And these were the factors that might have tipped the scales against their hearts -- because the worker bees never gave their bodies a chance to recover from the daily grind.

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