(HealthDay News) – For individuals with job strain, a healthy lifestyle is associated with a reduced risk of coronary artery disease, according to a study published online May 13 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

Mika Kivimäki, PhD, from University College London, and colleagues used pooled individual-level data from seven cohort studies that included 102,128 men and women who were free of existing coronary artery disease at baseline (1985–2000) to examine the correlation of job strain and lifestyle risk factors with the risk of coronary artery disease. Questionnaires assessed job strain and lifestyle risk factors: current smoking, physical inactivity, heavy drinking, and obesity. Participants were classified as healthy (no lifestyle risk factors), moderately unhealthy (one risk factor), or unhealthy (two to four risk factors).

During 7.3 years of follow-up, the researchers identified 1,086 incident events in 743,948 person-years at risk. For those with an unhealthy lifestyle, the risk of coronary artery disease was significantly higher than for those with a healthy lifestyle (hazard ratio, 2.55; population attributable risk, 26.4%). The risk was also significantly higher for those participants who had job strain compared with those who had no job strain (hazard ratio, 1.25; population attributable risk, 3.8%). Among participants with job strain and a healthy lifestyle, the 10-year incidence of coronary artery disease was 53% lower than the incidence among those with job strain and an unhealthy lifestyle (14.7 vs. 31.2 per 1,000).

“A healthy lifestyle may substantially reduce disease risk among people with job strain,” the authors write.

The institution of one of the authors received a grant from Saint-Gobain Ecophon, a manufacturer of sound-absorbing materials.

Full Text