CBS Local — To work or not to work? That is the question being asked by a study claiming that it’s healthier for people to stay unemployed rather than take on an overly stressful job.

Researchers in Great Britain followed over 1,000 unemployed workers, comparing their cholesterol, blood pressure, and other vital levels to those of people who were in poor working environments. “Job quality cannot be disregarded from the employment success of the unemployed,” University of Manchester’s Tarani Chandola said in a press release. “Just as good work is good for health, we must also remember poor quality work can be detrimental to health.”

Job quality was measured by pay, security, control, satisfaction, and level of anxiety in each profession the researchers studied. The findings, published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, concluded that people who re-entered the work force to take a poor quality job suffered from the effects of chronic stress more than patients who stayed unemployed.

Employees in poor working environments were also found to have an increase in the levels of substances associated with blood clots and inflammation within the body. Researchers added that higher quality jobs and working environments were more beneficial to the mental health of workers than staying out of work was.

In the United States, the unemployment rate has dropped from 4.8 to 4.1 percent in 2017, with approximately 6.5 million Americans currently without a job. The number of Americans reportedly collecting unemployment insurance fell to a 17-year low in April.

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