Informa Markets

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November 13, 2009

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Research/Reports- Dangers of night shifts

Informa Healthcare’s journal, Chronobiology International, has published a 14-year study of 7000 night-shift workers, which identified that night shifts may influence glucose tolerance. It has been widely reported that atypical shift schedules increase the risk of heart disease, as it can disturb the body’s circadian rhythms.The journal’s co-editor, Michael Smolensky, said: “Alternating between day and night shifts – resulting in continuous disruption of the body’s circadian rhythms – has been shown by this study to be damaging to the health of workers.“The main finding of this study is that shiftwork has a significantly detrimental effect on levels of haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), which is used as an index of glucose metabolism. The effect was similar to that seen with well-established risk factors, such as age and Body Mass Index.“However, intelligent development of more health-preserving shift schedules, together with efficient health-screening and regular check-ups, may be of considerable benefit in maintaining the health of this vulnerable group of workers.”For a PDF of the full report, contact [email protected]
 

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