First, we learned that people who are unemployed are more likely to experience depression than people employed full-time. And now, Gallup-Healthways researchers show us how unemployment is linked with heart health, too.
The report also showed that long-term unemployment carries much higher obesity risks than short-term unemployment. Specifically, the obesity rate for people who have been unemployed for a year or more is 32.7 percent. Compare that with 22.8 percent for people who have been unemployed for two weeks or less, or 25.1 percent for people who have been unemployed for three to five weeks.
The report, which is based on data from more than 350,000 adults in 2013, also included 5,000 interviews with the long-term unemployed (which is being unemployed for 27 weeks or more) and the short-term unemployed (which is being unemployed for fewer than 27 weeks).
The long-term unemployed were also more likely to report more days where poor health was a hindrance to going about their usual activities. They reported 4.7 days in the last 30 days where their poor health kept them from their usual activities, compared with 1.4 days reported by the full-time employed.
"Over the longer term, one of the most worrisome implications of these relationships is that many of those who have been unemployed for a prolonged period may suffer chronic health problems even if they successfully re-enter the workforce," the Gallup researchers wrote in the report.