Retirement may be bad for your health, new study suggests

Published: Friday, May 17 2013 11:40 a.m. MDT

ADVANCE FOR MONDAY, AUG. AND THEREAFTER - In this photo taken Aug. 1, 2012, Janice Durflinger poses for a photo at her workplace in Lincoln, Neb. Durflinger runs computer software programs for a bank. She says she still works at 76, "because I have to." Despite Social Security’s long-term problems, the massive retirement and disability program could be preserved for generations to come with modest but politically difficult changes to benefits, taxes or a combination of both. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

Nati Harnik, AP

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According to a new study by the Institute of Economic Affairs, retiring may have a negative effect on one's health.

The study, which compared the physical and mental health of retirees in the U.K. to those who continued to work past the age of retirement, indicates that being retired decreases physical, mental and self-assessed health.

The study reflects 50 years of retirement data.

Among the results were a decrease in "very good" or "excellent" self-assessed health by about 40 percent, a rise in clinical depression by roughly 40 percent, as well as a rise in the probability of having at least one diagnosed physical condition by close to 60 percent.

The researchers recognized possible biases of the study. “Analysis is seriously complicated by the fact that, just as retirement can affect health, the decision to retire can also be affected by health,” Gabriel H. Sahlgre, the director of research at the Center for Market Reform of Education, wrote in the report.

Nonetheless, the study concludes that it is important for legislators to seek out policies to “reverse the rise in economic inactivity among older-middle-aged people.”

JJ Feinauer is a graduate of Southern Virginia University and an intern for the Moneywise page on DeseretNews.com. Email: jfeinauer@deseretdigital.com, Twitter: @johnorjj.

Read more about Retirement on BBC News .