Thursday, June 26, 2008

Working hard when alredy exhausted is not healthy?

I wonder what we make of this one? A few times on this blog I've mentioned the role of stress and psychological factors in health.

Labour while exhausted may be unhealthy - Perception of work a key factor

Working hard when fatigued may be admired by many Americans, but it is a virtue that could be harmful to one's health, according to new research by psychologists at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). The research supports a theory which suggests that exhausted individuals' cardiovascular systems are forced to work harder when they attempt to complete tasks, such as those encountered on the job or at school.

The research, published in the July issue of the International Journal of Psychophysiology, found that fatigued individuals had larger blood pressure increases than rested individuals under conditions where they viewed success as both possible and worthwhile. Investigators believe the effects were determined by effort on the part of the study participants, said UAB psychologist Rex Wright, Ph.D., who led the study.

When fatigued individuals perceive a task as achievable and worth doing, they increase their effort to make up for their diminished capability due to fatigue, Wright said. As a result, blood pressure tends to rise and remain elevated until the task is completed or individuals stop trying because they think success is impossible or too difficult to be justified.

Also reported here and it worth reading.

This stuff is really important. We can obsess over diet and exercise but the role of stress reduction and mental rest is really important.

1 comment:

Helder said...

Above all things we should listen to our bodies, the preservation of good health should always be the most important for anyone, and that i truly believe. Being fatigued, really fatigued is the way our body has to tell us: stop, that's enough, you need to recover. We're not machines and we have limits, those limits can and should be beaten, but only up to a certain point and little by little. Always with good health in mind.