09/28/2015 12:58 pm ET

Study Finds Very Good Reason To Work Past Retirement Age

Being unemployed/retired was linked to a greater risk of poor health.

For those who still enjoy the fantasy of a retirement life that includes strolls on the beach, walking hand-in-hand with a silver fox, snap out of it. People who don't retire are healthier, a new study found.

The University of Miami researchers, examining data collected on the National Health Interview Survey of 83,000 people post-65, found that the 13 percent who remained in the workforce were in better health than their counterparts who don't work.

“Being unemployed/retired was associated with the greatest risk of poor health across all health status measures, even after controlling for smoking status, obesity, and other predictors of health,” the study authors concluded.

But the results don’t show whether working past retirement age is what made senior citizens with jobs healthier than their non-working peers. The study authors even acknowledged that the reverse is often true: Health problems force some people to drop out of the workforce.

The report was published Thursday in the journal Preventing Chronic Disease, a publication of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The idea that working keeps you young isn't a new one of course. Many studies have documented the link between involuntary unemployment of older workers and depression. Keeping your mind active is also an important part of aging well, studies have shown

So if your heart is set on that beach stroll, maybe take a crossword puzzle with you?

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