Working shifts is bad for your health as study claims chance of developing diabetes soars

Employees who work outside normal office hours are 9% more likely to develop the condition and the risk is greatest among men and those on rotating shifts

BloombergA person with diabetes is seen injecting themselves
Shift workers face a 9% higher risk of diabetes, a study shows.

Medics, police officers and firefighters who do not work normal office hours are more likely to develop the condition, according to the research published in journal Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

The risk is highest among men and those who work rotating shift patterns.

Researchers studied more than 225,000 people, and found shift workers faced a 9% increased risk of developing diabetes compared to staff doing normal office hours.

Previous research has linked shift work to weight gain and increased appetite – both of which are risk factors for diabetes.

In the UK, 2.9 million people have diabetes, with around 90% of cases being type 2. There are also believed to be 850,000 people with undiagnosed diabetes.

Dr Alasdair Rankin, director of research at charity Diabetes UK, said: “These findings suggest that shift workers need to be aware of their personal risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

“They can do this by taking a type 2 diabetes risk assessment, either online or in their local pharmacy.

“The best way to reduce your risk of type 2 is to maintain a healthy weight through regular physical activity and by eating a healthy balanced diet.”

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