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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 June 27 - July 3  > Patients of young-onset type 2 diabetes who work longer hours are at increased risk of complications
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2018 June 27 - July 3 [LABOR]

Patients of young-onset type 2 diabetes who work longer hours are at increased risk of complications

July 2, 2018
Male type 2 diabetes patients in the 20- to 49-year-old age group who work excessively long hours are at increased risk of suffering retinopathy and other complications. A study of the Japan Federation of Democratic Medical Institutions (Min-iren) came to this conclusion. This is the first discovery of the relationship between diabetes patients’ working style and the control of their blood sugar levels.

Excessively long working hours has become a major issue in the national political scene. Under this circumstance, Min-iren focused on the work environment and lifestyle, and surveyed 352 male workers with young-onset type 2 diabetes regarding the impact of the number of weekly work hours on their blood glucose levels.

According to the Min-iren survey, regardless of industry, those who work more than 60 hours a week showed a higher frequency of having a glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) level of above 7% which is 2.92 times higher than those who work less than 35 hours in a week. Diabetes patients are normally warned that an HbA1c level exceeding 7% would raise the risk of complications.

In the same survey, among workers with healthy eating habits where they eat breakfast and not eat after 10 p.m., the rate of occurrence of an HbA1c level of over 7% was 2.5 times lower than those who eat after 10 p.m. and skip breakfast.

Doctor at a Min-iren-affiliated institution Azami Yasushi who heads the survey crew pointed out that shortening working hours will contribute to maintaining normal blood sugar levels. He said, “It is significant that our study highlighted the necessity of improving the work environment of workers with diabetes along with proper treatment for each individual patient.”
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