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Research Shows Working Moms Are Burning Out

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Kerrie Hillman is a financial analyst and the mother of two.
DURHAM — A new study proves what many already suspected.Researchers at Duke University say working mothers are more stressed thanother working women and it's affecting their health.

Some of the health problems are mild, others are more serious.While, this is bad news for working mothers, there is some good news.The stress can be controlled.

You could say Kerrie Hillman has two jobs. She's a financial analystand a mother to 4-year-old Isabel and 8-month-old Isaac.

The new study shows stress hormone levels are higher in working mothersthan in working women with no children. Dr. Redford Williams says suchstress can lead to other health problems.

Williams says the study shows working moms produce more of the stresshormone cortisol.

Dr. Williams suggests eating right and exercising to help reduce stress.Also, find ways to cope with your stress, and create a support networkthat can help solve child care problems.

For Kerrie Hillman, having her two children in a day care program she trustshelps relieve some of the stress. And, she says, she remembers what'simportant.

The study also shows a woman's stress level does not increase with morechildren. It only takes one child to make the hormone jump.Surprisingly, family income is not a factor, and neither is marital status.Working Womanmagazine has identified a hundred companiesthat are working mother-friendly. The top companies with headquarters inNorth Carolina include theSASInstitute,GlaxoWellcome, First UnionandNationsBank.

Other large companies in North Carolina that are identifiedas working mother-friendly includeIBM,Sara Lee (Sara Lee will have awebsite later this summer at www.saralee.com), Marriott, andJohnson and Johnson.

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