Scientists from Drexel University’s School of Public Health, in Philadelphia analyzed data from more than 65,000 postmenopausal women in the United States and found that several jobs were associated with poor heart health.

Compared to women with other professions, the risk of poor heart health was 36% higher in social workers, 33% higher in retail cashiers, 16% higher in health care providers, especially in the fields of nursing, psychiatry and home health aides; and 14% higher in registered nurses.

The findings suggest that a woman’s job is an important factor in her heart health. Although the study did not prove a cause-and-effect link, doctors may want to ask their female patients about their occupation to identify those at high risk for heart problems.

The findings help pinpoint which women might benefit from workplace health programs to improve heart health, the researchers said.

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