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Long commutes lead to heart and lung problems, survey reveals

Your journey to work is slowly killing you, a study has revealed. According to researchers at Washington University, anyone commuting more than 10 miles to the office could be increasing their chances of suffering heart and lung problems.

The further you drive to work, the more unhealthy you're likely to become.
The further you drive to work, the more unhealthy you’re likely to become.

Ironically, the study was conducted in Texas, voted 12th fattest state in the United States in 2011. According to lead researcher Christine Hoehner, nintety per cent of those who took part drove a car to get to and from their place of work, with the average commute being 12 miles. Nearly twenty per cent of participants travelled more than 20 miles.

“It looks like the threshold was a commute distance of 10 miles for blood pressure,” said Hoehner, who believes that beyond this point, a person’s health was generally likely to be worse.

“The study was the first to show that long commutes can take away from exercise and are associated with higher weight, lower fitness levels and higher blood pressure, and all of these are strong predictors of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and some cancers,” she added.

Hoehner’s findings have been published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, where they’re expected to face further analysis from professionals wishing to understand how driving to and from work can contribute to a people’s well being.

Where do you stand (or sit with a burger in your mouth) on this issue? Is the length of your commute reducing the amount of exercise you do? Would you be more inclined to walk to work if you lived closer to the office? Is the study fatally flawed because most people in Texas are fat anyway? Let us know how you feel in the comments below or on Facebook.

Source: Reuters


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