Physical Work And Dementia
This surprising finding comes from researchers at the University of Copenhagen who wrote that physically demanding labor may involve standing for long periods, lifting heavy objects, working in repetitive or physically awkward conditions, moving heavy loads or wielding power tools. They noted such tasks may not provide enough time for the body to adequately recover (unlike physical exercise intentionally performed during leisure time when there’s time allotted to recover). The researchers found that sustained physical work may impair cardiovascular fitness and increase inflammation and noted that earlier studies found a link between high levels of physical labor and a higher risk of cardiovascular disease and death. The investigators also found that poor cardiovascular function in people whose work requires a lot of physical exertion may increase the likelihood of developing dementia.
Kirsten Nabe‐Nielsen et al, “The effect of occupational physical activity on dementia: Results from the Copenhagen Male Study.” Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, October 10, 2020; DOI: 10.1111/sms.13846
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