Sunday, October 23, 2016

Housework Is Good for Women's Health

Here’s the latest from the psychosocial world. If you thought that the ultimate indignity a woman could suffer was to do housework—second only to cooking dinner—it turns out that you are wrong.

Researchers from Rotterdam have just discovered that doing housework is good for a woman’s health. That’s right. A woman who does more housework will live longer than a woman who does less. 

When it comes to men, the situation is reversed. Doing more housework will only increase a man’s lifespan marginally. If a man wants to achieve a therapeutic benefit and extend his life, he should work outside the house—in the garden. If a woman does more gardening, it will not increase her lifespan significantly.

The Daily Mail has the story:

It's probably not the most popular piece of health advice ever dished out – but researchers say that doing the housework can add years to your life.

They found that women who clean, hoover and do the laundry are likely to live almost three years longer.

It continues:

The team from University Medical Centre Rotterdam found that a 55-year-old woman who does little around the house is likely to live to see her 83rd birthday – but that those who keep on top of the housework should live on to the age of 86.

The benefit for men is much less marked. Their efforts with the loo brush will only buy them an extra year. 

But men who do the gardening live 2.7 years longer, while working outside the home has little effect on women.

What does it all mean? Probably it just means that God is a patriarchal sexist. But, you knew that already. Right?


Trigger Warning said...

Speaking of womyn's health, an urgent contemporary topic of vast breadth and depth, back in the '80s and early '90s when I was in the dating scene, in Boston and Chicago (where I lived), it was very fashionable for young, professional women to say "I can't cook."

I understand they were proud of their lack of basic skills because, you know, feminism.

But to me, it did nothing but identify them as dependents. People who can't cook are dependent on restaurants, pre-packaged manufactured grocery store junk food (e.g., Lean Cuisine), or snacks. Or, since I can cook, me.

Helplessness in the kitchen is not a appealing trait. In my view, it precluded consideration as a potential long-term partner (short-term arrangements were unaffected). I couldn't see why anyone would want a long term-relationship with, basically, a child.

Ares Olympus said...

Of course correlation isn't causation, but its worth looking at.

It does seem confusing as explained. Is this differenting between men or women who keep neat vs messy houses, or is it comparing married couples where its women vs men who do the indoor tasks? I wonder if the dailymail isn't just sensationalizing that sexist aspect to get people to read their articles and increase their ad views.

Here's the paper I think:
Background We aimed to determine the contribution of specific physical activity (PA) types (i.e. walking, cycling, domestic work, sports and gardening) on total life expectancy (LE) and LE with and without cardiovascular disease (CVD).

Results High total PA was associated with gains in total and CVD-free LE. High cycling contributed to higher total LE in men (3.7 years) and women (2.1 years) and higher LE without CVD in men (3.1 years) and women (2.4 years). Total and CVD-free LE were increased by high domestic work in women (2.6 and 2.4 years, respectively) and high gardening in men (2.7 and 2.0 years, respectively).

Conclusions Higher PA levels are associated with increased LE and more years lived without CVD. Of the different PA types, cycling provided high effects in both men and women. Cycling could be more strongly encouraged in activity guidelines to maximize the population benefits of PA.

It might be simpler to just follow my running coach's advice "Rx Exercise." I also recall that women have more problems with brittle bones when they get older, and need more weight bearing exercises to stress their bones to stay strong.

The Netherlands is a very active cycling nation, and they perhaps have a lot fewer couch potatoes, and are trying to expand that cultural virtue.

Perhaps there are many reasons the U.S. health insurance premiums are so high - because we're a passive culture that things its our job to eat and get fat, and doctors jobs (or pills) to fix the consequences?

Trigger Warning said...

"It does seem confusing as explained..."

I'm sure it does.

Trigger Warning said...

"Perhaps there are many reasons the U.S. health insurance premiums are so high..."

Perhaps there are.

Trigger Warning said...

"Maybe in order to understand mankind, we have to look at the word itself: 'Mankind.' Basically, it’s made up of two separate words, mank and ind. What do these words mean? It’s a mystery, and that’s why so is mankind."
--- Jack Handey, "Deep Thoughts"

Sam L. said...

But, STUART!!!! The Science is settled!

"It's probably not the most popular piece of health advice ever dished out – but researchers say that doing the housework can add years to your life." Hoo, BOY! Thou sayest a mouthful!

Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

"Of course correlation isn't causation, but its worth looking at."

Who said we were talking about causation instead of correlation? Stuart said the Rotterdam study showed "Doing more housework will only increase a man's lifespan marginally." What does that have to do with causation??? What would the cause be?

Climate Change theories don't hold up to a causation standard, yet you're all in. A Climate Change causation would be absurd. The climate is constantly changing. We're told the Earth is a dynamic ecosystem where a butterfly in South America creates all kinds of consequences for the world. Science says...

I'm still waiting for some Climate Change theologist to explain how the terrible winter at Valley Forge happened during the American Revolution. Perhaps too few automobiles? Too few humans? Too few cows? Or the Great Galveston Hurricane of 1900. Or the Blizzard of 1888. Or the frigidry of 1816. Or the Great Snow of 1717. Or, or, or...

Then, we're told, weather isn't climate. Okay, so what is weather?

Your amateur scientific beliefs are silly. Go cut-and-paste elsewhere.

Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

"Perhaps there are many reasons the U.S. health insurance premiums are so high."

No, Ares... there's only one: GOVERNMENT meddling and centralized control of health services.

Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

"The Netherlands is a very active cycling nation, and they perhaps have a lot fewer couch potatoes, and are trying to expand that cultural virtue."

Cultural virtue? For real? That they CYCLE?

Ares Olympus said...

IAC, correlation doesn't help recommend one universal behavior versus another for a supposed benefit, unless we understand the cause for each. At least I'm not going to recommend my girlfriend do more housekeeping than she wants to do, while she seems to like gardening. Who am I to complain?

And also, yes, I have no understanding of modern conservatives. They seem rather senseless to me, not interested in conservating things. Wendell Berry at at least made sense to me.

And yes, in my world cycling is a virtue. Even H.G. Well agreed, at least he's quoted as saying "When I see an adult on a bicycle, I do not despair for the future of the human race."

It never did make sense to me that we should carry around 4000lb of metal and furniture to move a human body or two a few miles. Of course that modern power does encourage people to organize their lives to need to travel many miles and maximimizes the amount of time they're stuck in traffic listening to talk radio, so there's that modern advantage of virtual companionship.

I have tried listening to talk radio a few times, but the commercials were just too hideous to bear.

I also don't understand runners or bikers who blast music (or radio) into their ears while they risk their lives being oblivious to their surroundings, apparently Darwin Awards are high status to some people. You just have to hope they go quickly, and don't raise my health insurance rates.

Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

Ares Olympus @October 23, 2016 at 8:17 PM:

Congratulations on having a girlfriend. My condolences to the lady.

Perhaps she is Olympus Ares? Like Bizzaro on Superfriends? Or Ms. Mxyztlplyk? Who knows. I send my compliments for her patience and tolerance for insufferability.

Insurance is the most regulated industry in the country. Direct your complaints to your man in the White House.