Remote work has almost become the new normal among white-collar employees, especially among tech bros, and as the world continues to settle into the new gig economy. Most people now prefer to take remote jobs which offer a lot of flexibility in terms of work hours among other advantages. At what cost, however? In this article, we shall explore some of the downsides and effects of remote work on your health you should pay full attention to.
Despite the advantages that remote working offers such as reduced cost of transportation for employees, more productive hours, reduced cost of rent for office space and office management, and ability to hire and work with people from any part of the world, among others; working remotely has also proven to have some detrimental effects on our health, especially the heart.
Below are three effects of remote work on your health.
Stay-at-home jobs make most people sit at a spot all day. The chance of doing even a minimum of 4000 steps a day is very low. In fact, an average person barely does more than 500 steps on days they stay indoors. This is a huge difference from the movement achieved when working at the office. You burn calories on your way to work when you walk to the bus stop or train station or even around the office for those who drive.
Increased Binge/Stress eating
Being at home gives you constant access to your kitchen as opposed to the office where you have to purchase food. This makes eating while working at home more dangerous. Sitting on a spot all day surprisingly raises your stress levels and so the chances of binging and unhealthy snacking are high. This in the long run exposes “work from home” employees to a higher risk of weight gain that could lead to obesity and heart disease.
Being indoors all day affects your social life and encourages low moods and unhealthy thoughts. Studies have shown that lack of outdoor activities and social interaction tend to have a detrimental effect on mental health in general. Low moods also give room for a higher chance to develop or worsen chronic conditions like Hypertension and diabetes. The heart is no exception.
These reasons above and many more are why a lot of young people are now seen coming down with heart failure, Myocardial Infarction(Heart Attack), and sudden death in some cases. Studies have shown that the rate of death from Heart conditions has markedly increased and is still on the rise. Hence, the need to pay attention, if you are currently working remotely.
Consequences of an unhealthy heart
The heart is the center of all mechanical activities. It acts like the generator/power supply to the body by pumping blood around all the organs, muscles, and bones which is necessary for proper body function. As a result, whatever causes the heart to function poorly or fail can also lead to a large number of medical conditions. Some of them are listed below.
Heart failure is a condition in which the heart is not able to pump enough blood to meet up with the demands of the body organs in order to have optimum body function. It is important to distinguish between heart failure and heart attack.
A heart attack is the complete stoppage of the heart; a medical emergency that if not addressed immediately can lead to immediate death. A heart attack can happen if a person who already has heart failure remains undiagnosed or untreated for a long period of time and the disease finally progresses to a heart attack (also known as myocardial infarction).
While it is possible for the heart to start failing gradually over a long period of time without a diagnosis, certain symptoms are often experienced which should not be ignored. They include:
– Chest Pain– Cough (dry or with pinkish phlegm– Easy Fatigue– Swelling in the legs, ankles, and feet.– Rapid or irregular heartbeat.– Shortness of breath with activity or when lying down.
If you experience some or more of these symptoms you may want to see a Doctor or run some tests to screen for heart conditions immediately.
Other conditions that can be developed from a sedentary and unhealthy lifestyle include:
Hypertension: Persistently raised blood pressure with a value of 140/90mmHg or more. It is called the silent killer because it can slowly damage other organs if not treated and lead to a stroke or death.
Diabetes: Continuously raised blood sugar levels and resistance to the effects of insulin and its function
Atherosclerosis: This is a condition that involves too much cholesterol stored in the blood vessels. It can also lead to a stroke.
Varicose Veins: These are large twisted veins found majorly about the foot, legs, and thighs. It occurs from an increase in the pressure in the veins of the lower body which can lead to or be caused by poor blood circulation in the body. They are usually painful and aesthetically unpleasing.
How do I improve my lifestyle as a remote worker?
If you currently work from home, you may be alarmed about the state of your health but you don’t have to worry. There are ways to create a healthy work-lifestyle balance and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
The goal is to incorporate exercise or physical activity into your daily lifestyle. Walking about 10,000 steps a day or 30 minutes of activity is a good way to keep your heart healthy.
Here are other tips that may be of help reduce the effects of remote work on your health.– Create a timetable and set aside time for physical activity– Visit a friend every week– Register at the gym or get a fitness trainer– Practice healthy Snacking– Have a walking Partner/Group– Have an outdoor work day– Plan outdoor recreational activities like swimming, dancing …..– Do regular health checks
Visit www.healthtracka.com to book a test today. One of the perks of booking with Healthtracka is that you also get a complimentary doctor consultation to review your result and guide you towards wellness.