COULD IT REALLY BE THIS EASY?
A mounting body of convincing research indicates sitting for too many consecutive hours, at home or at the office, is a factor in major diseases and early death. Many of us spend 15 hours or more sitting down every day and this is simply terrible.
When you are sitting, your body is mostly on idle. The lower, large muscles in your back and those in your legs aren’t working, and this inactivity sends a message to your brain that lowers you metabolism. You are burning one measly calorie per minute which makes your blood sugar level increase. In turn, this has a number detrimental effects, from obesity to high blood pressure, even increased risk of cancer.
Yes, getting off your butt (GOYB) can change your life.
If you go for frequent five minute (or more) walks and avoid sitting down for more than 2-to-3 hours at a time, you can expect the following 10 benefits:
- Healthier heart. People who sit for the majority of the day are 54% more likely to die of a heart attack.
- Healthier kidneys including 30% lower risk of kidney disease.
- Better mental health including less risk of dementia.
- Lower blood pressure.
- Lower risk or colon cancer.
- Improved blood glucose levels making you less likely to develop type II diabetes.
- Stronger back, reduced risk of back pain and spinal problems.
- Better eyesight. When you sit too long you are more likely to be staring at a screen, and more prone to eyestrain.
- Stronger bones. Weight bearing exercise, including walking, strengthens bones and helps to prevent osteoporosis.
- Increased life expectancy. Over the course of a year, people who sit for the majority of the day are 40% more likely to die of any cause.
There are literally hundreds of YouTube videos on this subject, but below is one that does a great job of explaining exactly why sitting is so bad for you. It is a little “offbeat” but I think it makes the point:
Note to Caregivers
If you are caring for someone, it is important for both of you to get up and walk. If the person you care is in a wheelchair, the simple act of moving them in and out of the chair can be beneficial. Taking them out for walks, even more so.
Not convinced, or do you want to know more? Here are a few of the articles I relied upon when writing the above:
- Are we facing a new paradigm of inactivity physiology (British Journal of Sports Medicine)
- Sitting is Bad for You: What Can You Do About It at Work? (Inc. magazine)
- Sedentary time in adults and the association with diabetes, cardiovascular disease and death: systematic review and meta-analysis (Diabetologia Journal)
- Sit More, Die Sooner (WebMD)
- Key to Fighting Cancer is to Stay Active (ABC News)
- Walking Leads to Better Health for Older Men (Center for Advancing Health)
- 7 Ways Sitting Will Kill You (Popular Science)
- Don’t Just Sit There. Really. (Los Angeles Times)
Want to Know More About Unfrazzle?