If you sit down all day, your health might be suffering
All of us have become accustomed to sitting down for prolonged periods of time. Why? Because that’s what we’ve been conditioned to think is the norm. In fact, millions of people earn a living in a job that requires them to sit down for around eight hours a day; nine-to-five office jobs are up there with the most common. What if we said sitting is bad?
Even if it’s not for your career, people are traveling, eating, and relaxing all whilst sitting down. So, none of us are strangers to that sedentary position. However, despite being a normal thing, studies have shown that sitting for a long time not actually beneficial for your health. The research was conducted by researchers from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), where 874 people participated in the study. The researchers discovered shocking things that should definitely make you jump off your feet and begin standing up right now.
According to the report, older women and men who were sitting for at least fifteen hours a day were at serious risk of developing cardiovascular disease. However, the researchers also took account of the fitness regime of the participants. About 40 percent of those we also exercised regularly despite sitting for a long time were less prone to cardiovascular disease. The study showed that sitting for a long time is bad but for the people who did not exercise sitting was worse. The study concluded that if you are sitting for a long time due to the nature of your work, make sure that you get your daily dose of exercise so that the risk associated with sitting long was minimized.
The study found that those who sat for 12-13 hours every day and did not exercise regularly, had a very high chance of cardiovascular diseases. According to the study, if you fall into this category, you can be included into the cardiovascular risk factor cluster.
Within a cardiovascular risk factor cluster, there’s a bunch of different diseases, as well as individual symptoms that could combine to form a more severe health concern. For instance, elevated waist circumference, hypertension, and diabetes are all problems in their own way. But, those, along with high triglycerides and cholesterol create what’s known as metabolic syndrome.
To put that into perspective, sitting down without making a conscious effort to be active can leave you vulnerable to heart disease, diabetes and stroke. But, even the more minor effects will still have an impact. For example, an elevated waist circumference may seem like one of your least worries, but eventually it could limit mobility and make it even harder to exercise further down the line.
There have been a lot of similar studies that have indicated that the sedentary lifestyle kills as many people as smoking per year. When you consider that cigarettes are solely responsible for the deaths of more than 480,000 Americans per year, you can understand how bad sitting is for your health.
Moreover, the conclusive argument from the NTNU researchers was that “being fit plays an important part in successful aging and may provide you protection against the negative health effects of being sedentary.”
Thus, sitting is bad. What are you going to do about it? All in all, increase your activity levels and adopt a healthier lifestyle. Although, the study also highlighted the fact that being fit isn’t the be-all and end-all, because you also need adequate cardiorespiratory fitness to combat the toll that being sedentary takes. Essentially, you need to try and sit less throughout the day.