Is Sitting the Smoking of Our Generation?
Why Your Chair Is Killing You, and What You Can Do About It.
These are two headlines from a 2013 Huffington Post article and an article by Dr. Mercola, September 28, 2014 respectively.
Has anything changed?
One researcher noted that, “Now we know that being sedentary is another risk factor for premature death. In one recent study, researchers found that is most people spent less than three hours a day sitting, it would add two years to the average life expectancy in the USA.”
Scientists believe that the “sitting disease” is a major risk factor for early death, on par with smoking.
Can sitting too much also cause weight gain?
“Because we’ve become so used to being seated… we’ve failed to realize that this is a major health concern.”
Quote from Dr. Levine, co-director of the Obesity Initiative for Mayo Clinic/Arizona State University.
Over 10,000 studies show that prolonged sitting is devastating your health. It actively promotes dozens of chronic diseases, including obesity and type 2 diabetes, even if you are very fit!
- After one hour of sitting, “the production of enzymes that burn fat declines by as much as 90 percent.”
- Extended sitting slows the body’s metabolism affecting things like HDL levels (good cholesterol) in our bodies.
- Research shows that this lack of physical activity is directly tied to 6% of the impact for heart diseases, 7% for type 2 diabetes, and 10% for breast cancer & colon cancer.
- The death rate associated with obesity in the United States is now 35 million per year! This should not be taken lightly considering Tobacco claims only 3.5 million per year.
- For each additional hour of television that a person sat and watched per day, the risk of dying rises by 11 percent. This figure is from a study published in the journal Circulation that included nearly 9,000 Australians.
What Can I do?
- Stand up when you talk in person or on the phone.
- Walk when you talk. Have walking meetings when feasible.
- Use standing desks.
- Walk around for at least 5 minutes every 50 to 55 minutes.
- Set a timer so you remember!
- Cut TV / Facebook times or do while standing.
- Walk to talk to person instead of emailing when feasible.
- Note: Even when you’re hitting the gym regularly, too much sitting is still bad for you.
“… men who reported more than 23 hours a week of sedentary activity had a 64 percent greater risk of dying from heart disease than those who reported less than 11 hours a week of sedentary activity. And many of these men routinely exercised … “
Mike’s recommendation: Mindful Standing.
Some sitting may be good for you- but NEVER this kind!