While some may prefer the relative quiet of working the late shift, a new study says that after-hours work may be bad for your health.

In fact, the study says, working the graveyard shift may actually give you a heart attack or stroke.

It’s already been established by other researchers that any shift other than traditional 9-to-5 increases the risk of high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity. And now, a new study released by the British Medical Journal says that vascular disease can result as well.

One theory is that late shift work disrupts circadian rhythm, which in turn affects heart rate and blood pressure. In addition, researchers think that lack of sleep, poor diet and reduced physical activity also have an impact on the vascular health of those who work overnight.

Dr. Carl Lavie, a cardiologist at Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans, said the shift workers should be aware of the risk factor and take appropriate steps. “My advice would be to exercise and make sure their fitness is at a high level, and then I’d treat their risk factors vigorously,” he said.

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