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Workaholism Leads to Deteriorated Physical and Mental Health- Study

By iDigitalTimes Staff Reporter on August 27, 2013 6:05 AM EDT 0

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People working above 50 hours per week were identified with worsen health caused by missing meals. (Photo: Facebook)

Researchers from Kansas State University have discovered that workaholism leads to poorer physical health and mental well-being.

The experiment was led by a doctoral student Sarah Asebedo along with her fellow researchers, who analysed the data from 1979's National Longitudinal Survey of Youth. The data included more than 12,680 young men and women, after which the researchers established a link between workaholism and physical and mental health.

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The researchers found that people working over 50 hours per week were found to have deteriorated well-being caused by missing meals. The researchers calculated the deducted mental well-being on the basis of self-reported depression by the participants.

The researchers also tried figuring out the exact reasons why people overwork even after knowing the ill impact of it on their health. A theory called Gary S. Becker's Theory of the Allocation of Time was used by the experimenters for choice measuring the cost of time.

"It looks at the cost of time as if it were a market good. This theory suggests that the more money you make, the more likely you are to work more. If you are not engaged in work-related activities, then there is a cost to the alternative way in which time is spent," Asebedo said in the university's news release. "Even if you understand the negative consequences to workaholism, you may still be likely to continue working because the cost of not doing so becomes greater."

Becker's theory implies that working makes an individual wealthy but leaves lesser time for the person to spend that amount and also makes the person habituated to an unhealthy routine, Asebedo explained.  

Asebedo alerts her clients on the basis of this research about the ill-effects of over working. She also suggests them to be prepared with plans to overcome these impacts during hard working days.

"From a financial planning and counseling perspective, it's good to be aware of workaholism," Asebedo stated. "It helps me understand what can be the cause of my clients' stress. It's just a reminder that you may want to dig a bit deeper into clients' work lives. Sometimes you might find that they don't like what they are doing and they want to make a change, yet financially, they don't know how they can accomplish that."

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