Long Commutes May Be Harmful to Your HealthTuesday, May 08, 2012
People who have long daily commutes are more likely to be overweight, have high blood pressure, lower cardiorespiratory fitness, and less likely to engage in moderate or vigorous physical activity, according to a recent Washington University in St. Louis study. Few studies have focused on commuting distance and its contribution to a sedentary lifestyle that is prevalent among employed adults. The researchers analyzed clinical data from more than 4,000 mostly white and well-off people who routinely commute in the Dallas-Fort Worth and Austin areas of Texas. They found that those who drove more than 15 miles to work were less likely to meet recommendations for physical activity, were more likely to be obese, and those traveling at least 10 miles had an increased risk of high blood pressure. The researchers noted that time spent commuting took time away from other physical activities, and the stress of dealing with congestion on a daily basis may contribute to higher blood pressure.