A new study finds that long commutes to and from work may be a cause for earlier death, especially in women.
Got a killer commute? You just may. Thursday in Los Angeles (appropriately), social geographer Erika Sandow presented her latest slice of commuting scholarship, which finds that some workers with long commutes—more than 31 miles (50 kilometers) one way—die sooner than people who live closer to their job. Sandow, with Sweden’s Umeå University, outlined her as-yet-unpublished work during the annual meeting of the Association of American Geographers. There’s already enough academic research on the perils of commuting to fill a minivan, or at least a Mini. Sandow noted existing studies that showed how commuting was linked to higher blood pressure, added stress, taking more sick leave, gaining more weight, a higher incidence of heart disease, and more. Her own work, besides establishing the parameters for a long commute, has shown the toll that commuting takes on relationships.