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Age, Weight Discrimination Linked to Negative Health Consequences

Posted on in Employment

Experiencing any kind of discrimination can increase stress and contribute to a decline in health. However, persons who experience age or weight discrimination seem to be much more susceptible to negative health consequences, compared to persons who suffer other types of discrimination.

According to the results of a new study, persons who suffered age or weight-based discrimination reported sharp declines in physical, mental and cognitive health, compared to persons who reported sex or race-based discrimination. There have been earlier studies that have also indicated that age discrimination seems to be linked to a much higher risk of negative health consequences. For instance, studies have indicated that age discrimination is linked to problems like stress.

Stress is strongly linked to cardiovascular problems risk of stroke, hypertension and other serious health problems. The study found that while age and weight related discrimination was strongly linked to declines in health, race, gender, and sexual orientation-based discrimination was not linked to any comparable declines.

Persons in their 50s frequently reported age-related discrimination. Overall, they were treated with less courtesy, and also reported lower levels of service when they visited restaurants and other public facilities. Age-related workplace discrimination also increases stress levels for older people. An increasing number of citizens are now exposed to stress in the workplace, because there are more of them working now than ever before. Since the recession of 2008 which wiped out many retirement accounts, many seniors have had no other choice but to return to work, or to continue working. That has meant many of them working in environments that are not very favorable or not very welcoming to senior citizens. Seniors may be passed up for promotions, or may be subjected to snide comments or jokes in the workplace. All of this can increase the risk of negative health consequences.

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