Sunday, June 9, 2013

Is Your Work Giving you IBS?

All jobs come with health risks. Some risks are obvious in the short-term, others seem very minor but with plenty of negative long-term consequences. Such as weight gain or irritable bowel syndrome.

Most likely to gain weight on the job
Recent CareerBuilder report shows that employees spending long hours behind a desk or experiencing high levels of stress gain weight on the job. Chances to gain weight are 69% for administrative assistants, 56% for engineers including software developers, 51% for teachers and K-12 instructors, 51% for B14 nurse practitioners and physician assistants, 51% for IT managers and network administrators, 46% for attorneys, judges and legal professionals, 45% for operators, assembly line and production workers and 39% for biological, physical and social scientists.


Irritable Bowel Syndrome is also associated with stressful, sedentary and less regular lifestyles. Some studies showed that this common disorder is more prevalent among the unemployed, those with lower income and education. But this could be a consequence rather than the cause. As IBS is more likely to occur in teenagers and singles (or stressed heads of households) under the age of 40. And the younger the person, the more it affects the social functioning, making it more difficult to get higher education, employment and advance career.

Studies all over the world showed that students are among the most vulnerable to IBS populations. The risk of getting it is 30% or higher. High stress, irregular schedules and lousy diets are a way of life for most students. Attending a university or college is a stressful experience, indeed. IBS flareups, however, do not directly correlate with stress per se, rather with the perceived stress. A study that looked at military veterans, for example, found that those who developed IBS had twice higher rates of anxiety and depression than other veterans. Female veterans suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder had 3-9 times higher rate of IBS. Prevalence of IBS in female veterans was about 40%, higher than for students. Rates of IBS among another stressful profession - nursing - are about the same as for students. But rates for rotating shift nurses can be as high as almost 50% - even higher than for military personnel.

So, if you want to avoid IBS, become a dietitian - it's one of the least stressful jobs with fixed hours and opportunities to think about healthy food choices. Or be your own Aurametrix, to find what foods, activities and environmental exposures work best for you - and in what amounts and combinations.

REFERENCES

Kim HI, Jung SA, Choi JY, Kim SE, Jung HK, Shim KN, & Yoo K. (2013) Impact of shiftwork on irritable bowel syndrome and functional dyspepsia. Journal of Korean medical science, 28(3), 431-7. PMID: 23487413

Nojkov B, Rubenstein JH, Chey WD, & Hoogerwerf WA (2010). The impact of rotating shift work on the prevalence of irritable bowel syndrome in nurses. The American journal of gastroenterology, 105 (4), 842-7 PMID: 20160712

Okami, Y. (2013). Irritable bowel syndrome in Chinese nursing and medical school students—Related lifestyle and psychological factors Open Journal of Gastroenterology, 03 (01), 55-63 DOI: 10.4236/ojgas.2013.31009

Jafri W, Yakoob J, Jafri N, Islam M, & Ali QM. (2005) Frequency of irritable bowel syndrome in college students. Journal of Ayub Medical College, Abbottabad : JAMC, 17(4), 9-11. PMID: 16599025

Naeem SS, Siddiqui EU, Kazi AN, Memon AA, Khan ST, & Ahmed B. (2012) Prevalence and factors associated with irritable bowel syndrome among medical students of Karachi, Pakistan: a cross-sectional study. BMC research notes, 255. PMID: 22624886

Alhazmi AH. (2011) Irritable bowel syndrome in secondary school male students in AlJouf Province, north of Saudi Arabia. JPMA. The Journal of the Pakistan Medical Association, 61(11), 1111-5. PMID: 22125990

Dong YY, Zuo XL, Li CQ, Yu YB, Zhao QJ, & Li YQ. (2010) Prevalence of irritable bowel syndrome in Chinese college and university students assessed using Rome III criteria. World journal of gastroenterology : WJG, 16(33), 4221-6. PMID: 20806442

Hazlett-Stevens H, Craske MG, Mayer EA, Chang L, & Naliboff BD. (2003) Prevalence of irritable bowel syndrome among university students: the roles of worry, neuroticism, anxiety sensitivity and visceral anxiety. Journal of psychosomatic research, 55(6), 501-5. PMID: 14642979

Olubuyide IO, Olawuyi F, & Fasanmade AA. (1995) A study of irritable bowel syndrome diagnosed by Manning criteria in an African population. Digestive diseases and sciences, 40(5), 983-5. PMID: 7729288

Jafri W, Yakoob J, Jafri N, Islam M, & Ali QM. (2005) Frequency of irritable bowel syndrome in college students. Journal of Ayub Medical College, Abbottabad : JAMC, 17(4), 9-11. PMID: 16599025

Gulewitsch MD, Enck P, Hautzinger M, & Schlarb AA. (2011) Irritable bowel syndrome symptoms among German students: prevalence, characteristics, and associations to somatic complaints, sleep, quality of life, and childhood abdominal pain. European journal of gastroenterology & hepatology, 23(4), 311-6. PMID: 21399505

Rev Bras Ginecol Obstet. 2013 Feb;35(2):84-9. Irritable bowel syndrome in women with chronic pelvic pain in a Northeast Brazilian city. Lessa LM, Chein MB, da Silva DS, Poli Neto OB, Nogueira AA, Coelho LS, Brito LM.

Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2012 Jul;10(7):712-721.e4. doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2012.02.029. Epub 2012 Mar 15. Global prevalence of and risk factors for irritable bowel syndrome: a meta-analysis. Lovell RM, Ford AC.

Dig Dis Sci. 2006 Mar;51(3):446-53. Prevalence, sociodemography, and quality of life of older versus younger patients with irritable bowel syndrome: a population-based study. Minocha A, Johnson WD, Abell TL, Wigington WC.

2 comments:

Sorbeo Digest said...

People often under-estimate the role stress can play for health in general and IBS, specifically. Some people might laugh at this, but yoga can help wonders for stress management as well.

The truth is that stress is a hormonal response, and complete management requires activity (exercise or yoga) and proper diet.

Some folks swear by digestive enzymes as part of an ongoing effort to manage IBS.

Team Sorbeo
www.getsorbeo.com

Dr Pullen said...

My understanding is that the most stressful jobs are those where an individual has the least control over their time and outcomes. Seemingly high pressure jobs with lots of autonomy seem not to be as high stress. I suspect IBS is higher too in the really stressful jobs.