During tough financial times, many people try to demonstrate their value at work by working harder and longer. But, if you don't also make time to take care of yourself, success may come at a hefty cost: your health. Dr. George Griffing, Saint Louis University professor of internal medicine, offers the seven worst habits of workaholics.
"Many people feel like they have to push themselves to unhealthy levels in order to succeed. But high-pressure jobs and long hours take a real toll on your immediate and future health," says George Griffing, M.D., professor of internal medicine at Saint Louis University.
Whether you're running for president, moving up the corporate ladder or juggling your family's activities, it's crucial that you take a break to care for yourself, he says. These are the seven worst habits of workaholics, according to Griffing.
- Forgetting to relax: While some stress can be good because it keeps you alert and motivated, too much stress or chronic stress will take its toll on your body. In fact, stress can cause a wide-array of problems including: cancer , heart disease , headaches, upset stomach, sleeping problems , muscle tension, weight gain/loss, high blood pressure and chest pains.
- Eating on the go: Between meetings, conference calls and deadlines, who has time to sit down for a healthy lunch? But a healthy, balanced meal of complex carbohydrates , protein , fruits and vegetables is exactly what you need to stay mentally sharp throughout the day. Beware of frozen meals, fast food and processed food; they can be high in sodium, calories and fat.
- Putting off sleep for work: Even busy professionals need seven to nine hours of sleep every night. Skimping on sleep can cause irritability, difficulty concentrating, memory problems and poor judgment. It has also been linked to obesity . If you have troubles sleeping at night, avoid bringing work to bed, limit caffeine and alcohol consumption and develop a relaxing routine before bedtime, such as light reading or a warm bath. If you still cannot sleep, seek the help of an expert .
- Not making time for exercise: Humans were not designed to sit at desks for eight hours or more a day. Getting at least 30 minutes of exercise most days is very important to your immediate and future health. In addition to reducing the risk for nearly every major disease, exercise has been shown to help fight anxiety and depression . By hitting the gym before or after work or walking during lunch, even the busiest person can find time to squeeze in exercise.
- Working even when sick: Everyone has heard, "don't come to work if you're sick," yet that's exactly what many do. Whether you're worried about jeopardizing your job in an unstable economy or just anxious about getting behind, there are three common sense reasons to stay home: Nobody wants your germs, you...