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8. Economic recessions and health

The UK has officially entered an economic recession but what does that mean for your health? On this episode of the Fresh Heart Podcast we explore the health effects of financial downturns and how you can protect your heart in difficult economic times.

Research looking at health in times of economic hardship is counter-intuitive. Did you know there is data suggesting that when high income countries enter a recession, the mortality rate falls? Despite this surprising finding, recessions are stressful and they affect us all in different ways. Listen in and find out how to optimise your cardiac health during this difficult time.

If you have been affected by the issues discussed in this podcast, you can find support in the links below.

Financial support for Individuals:

Organisations that support mental health:

Remember, be kind to yourself and small, sustainable steps lead to great change.

Listen now:


Podcast references:

  1. Ruhm CJ. Are recessions good for your health? Q J Econ 2000; 115: 617-50

  2. Ruhm CJ. Good times make you sick. J Health Econ 2003; 22: 637-58

  3. Gerdtham UG, Ruhm CJ. Deaths rise in good economic times: evidence from the OECD. Econ Hum Biol 2006; 4: 298-316

  4. Ruhm CJ. A healthy economy can break your heart. Demography 2008; 44: 829-48

  5. Granados JAT et al. Cardiovascular Risk Factors, Depression, and Alcohol Consumption During Joblessness and During Recessions Among Young Adults in CARDIA. Am J Epidemiol 2018 Nov 1;187(11):2339-2345.

  6. Astell-Burt T, Feng X. Health and the 2008 Economic Recession: Evidence from the United Kingdom. PLoS One. 2013; 8(2): e56674. Published online 2013 Feb 20.

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