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 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 travelling, eating and relaxing all whilst sitting down. So, none of us are strangers to that sedentary position. However, despite it being a typical thing, studies have proven that it’s not beneficial for your health. The research was conducted by researchers from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) on 874 people.
They discovered shocking things which should definitely make you stand up and take notice…
Firstly, according to the report, older women and men who were sedentary for at least fifteen hours a day were at serious risk of developing cardiovascular disease. But, NTNU also took fitness into account. With that in mind, they established that those least at risk to cardiovascular disease are elders who fall into the top 40-percent for fitness levels. This shows that sitting is bad, if you sit down all day.
But, even that category was still relatively sedentary, and were deemed to sit down for roughly twelve or thirteen hours a day. Now, anyone who didn’t qualify as having high fitness levels, but concurrently sat down for prolonged periods on a consistent basis, would have a higher chance of a cardiovascular risk factor cluster.
Within a cardiovascular risk factor cluster, there’s a bunch of different diseases, but also 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 right. 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.
Other studies have even pointed towards extensive sedentary living 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 lend protection against the negative health effects of being sedentary.”
So 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.