New research that distills the findings of 47 studies concludes that those of us who sit for long hours raise our average risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and early death.
Even for those of us who meet recommended daily levels of exercise, sitting for long periods of time boosts our likelihood of declining health.
But even those who punctuate a long day of sitting with a vigorous workout were estimated to be 16% more likely to die of any cause in a given time than were those who do not sit for long.
The studies that formed the basis for such aggregations defined prolonged sitting, as well as high levels of physical activity, quite differently. While one study included participants who spent as little as an hour a day seated, the rest defined prolonged sitting as those who watched television for at least five hours a day on up to those who had more than six and, in one study, more than 11 hours of “sitting time” a day.
And the thing is, is that an hour or so of exercise every day doesn’t seem to make up for this very much. It obviously is healthy and helpful, but the studies suggest that a whole lot of sitting — between a commute, work, watching TV — is a major factor in shortening life and upping the risk of contracting diseases.
Here’s a question to put into this: What about seated meditation? I wonder how that would factor in?
Easiest thing to do, according to researchers, is to get up for a minute to three every half an hour.
Posted by Steve