The price of ‘toil glamour’

Millennials could be paying a price for their obsession with hustle and what is being called ‘toil glamour’ — the glorification of workaholism.

A new study says millennials (born between 1981 and 1996) are less healthy, and more depressed, than previous generations. This combination doesn’t bode well for their long-term health and wellness. The trend also has implications for future healthcare costs and workplace productivity. The impact could be significant over the next two decades as millennials will soon be the largest generation in the workforce.

According to the 2017 Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) Health Index, millennials experienced increases in the prevalence of nearly all of the top ten conditions impacting their health. Major, depression, hyperactivity and Type II diabetes saw the greatest increase between 2014 - 2017. They are followed by hypertension, behavioral health issues, high cholesterol, substance abuse, Crohn’s disease/ulcerative colitis, tobacco use disorder and alcohol use disorders,

The study focuses on the 55 million millennial Americans who are commercially insured and compares them to the national population. Other findings include:

  • The total adverse health impact for millennial women is 20 percent greater than for men, driven largely by major depression, Type II diabetes and other endocrine conditions (including parathyroid, ovary, adrenal, pituitary and other related conditions).
  • Millennials in southern states, such as Louisiana, Alabama and West Virginia are the least healthy; while millennials in the western states of Nevada, Colorado and California are the healthiest.
  • As many as one-third of millennials don’t have a primary care physician. They tend to miss out on regular health screenings and are less likely to seek preventative care on a regular basis.

Although the study results show otherwise, 83 percent of millennials believe they are in good or excellent health.

Measuring and collecting data about millennial behavior is critical to improving the long-term health and wellness of future generations.

If you are a millennial, it may be time to add regular health care screenings to your hustle. Find a primary care physician and schedule a routine checkup.