Married mothers who has jobs enjoy better health

Information about women’s employment history, marital status and if they had had children was collected for every decade from the age of 26, alongside weight and height. The research found that by the age of 54, women who had partners, were a mother and who had worked were significantly less likely to report ill health than women who did not fulfil all three roles, Times Online reports.

Epidemiologist Anne McMunn of University College London drew more than 1,400 female participants from a study of 5,362 Britons born during the first week of March 1946. Followed throughout their lives, including face-to-face interviews at ages 26, 36, 46 and 53, the women provided data from both their own views of their health as well as objective measures such as body-mass index. By assessing both subjective and objective information, the researchers hoped to discover whether working moms undertook such multitasking because of their inherent health or achieved good health because of their multiple roles, Scientific American reports.

"Our results suggest that good health is more likely to be the result, rather than the cause, of multiple role occupation," the researchers write in a paper presenting the findings in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. "The next step is to better understand what it is about particular work and family roles that influences people's health."