In case you needed more evidence that everything you love is bad for you, here’s a fun fact about that precious weekend you’ve been looking forward to: Of all the days of the week, Saturday is the day people are most likely to die.
That’s according to a new analysis from LiveScience, which took on the the grim task of crunching the numbers from the Centers for Disease Control for the causes of all deaths in the U.S. between 1999 and 2004 — a total of 39 million deaths. They released their results earlier this week, and Saturday topped the list in a few different categories: It had the highest number of deaths by car crash (perhaps not surprising, given that it’s a day that people often drink), drug overdoses, and “contact with a venomous plant or animal.”
Elsewhere in the week, Sunday was the highest for deaths by firearms, and Tuesday had the most deaths caused by the flu and pneumonia. (Separately, a 2009 study found that suicides spike on Wednesdays.)
For each individual day of the week, LiveScience reported, the top ten causes of death matched the ten overall most common causes listed by the CDC (heart disease, cancer, chronic lower respiratory diseases, accidents, strokes, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, flu and pneumonia, kidney disease, and suicide). Heart disease is currently the number-one cause of death in the U.S., a fact reflected in the analysis — Monday through Sunday, heart attack was the leading killer, though they occurred more often on Monday than any other day (a 2005 study reached the same conclusion, reporting that the rate of deadly heart attack was highest on Mondays for both men and women).
And to be fair to Saturdays, the difference between the deadliest day of the week and the least deadly was pretty negligible. Over the 15-year period LiveScience examined, Saturday led the pack with had 5.7 million deaths; on the other end of the spectrum, Sunday brought up the rear with 5.6 million — a difference of just 1.8 percent. Put another way: Weekends are the deadliest, and also the safest. Don’t think about it too hard. Just go have brunch, or fire up Netflix, or whatever it is you do on your days off, and try not to contemplate your own mortality.