Want to Live Longer? Your Co-workers Will be of Great Help

Have colleagues who provide support not only facilitates the daily work, but also help people to live longer, according to a new study.

Researchers  found that a good relationship with co-workers had an impact on mortality risk of individuals and was more pronounced between 38 and 43 years.

“Social support from peers, which could represent how well a participant is socially integrated in their workplace, is a strong predictor of the risk of mortality from all causes,” the researchers reported in the study, published in the journal Health Psychology , American Psychological Association.

Dr. Arie Shirom and colleagues studied the medical records of more than 800 workers, followed for 20 years between 1988 and 2008, and questionnaires measuring job demands, control over work and support from peers and supervisors.

Although complaints about the bosses are a favorite subject, the study showed that having a supervisor who provides good support for the employee had no impact on mortality.

Meanwhile, the researchers found a marked difference between the sexes that makes the impact of having control and decision authority at work. In women, it increased the risk of mortality in the study, but had a protective effect on men.

The authority to make decisions based on the ability of employees to use their own initiative, have an influence on how to use their skills and the freedom to make decisions to accomplish tasks.

Shirom explained these results by the fact that most people in the study were workers in blue-collar, a job category in which men tend to have high levels of control and women.

A third of the research participants were women. The average time was 8.8 hours. 80 percent were married and had children and almost half had at least 12 years of formal education.

The researchers controlled for other risk factors that could impact on mortality, such as cholesterol levels, blood pressure, smoking, alcohol consumption and anxiety.

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