Why prolonged sitting is not good for your health, who all are affected & how to avoid it?
Sitting at a single place for a long period of time or at a stretch can be really harmful for your health. Unfortunately, the lifestyle that we lead and the kind of work that most of us do compel us to spend time sitting than standing or walking.
If our activity levels are compared with those of our parents or our grandparents, it will be found that they remained more on their feet with high levels of activity in their general life. And this is the reason that they could evade various kinds of health problems quite easily.
As per reports from current research and studies, it has been found that lack of activity and sitting for long hours is doing immense harm to the body. The extent of the harm is so grave that you cannot even think of the same.
Sitting has increased significantly in people than ever before
When you think for the first time, you might find it ridiculous as how sitting can be harmful for the body at all. Basically, sitting is a normal posture in humans and they sit while studying, eating, working, traveling and meeting people or socializing.
Normal sitting is absolutely ok and has no harmful effects. But when this happens beyond control, it can cause really bad effects. Sedentary behavior has touched all-time high records lately and is becoming a worrying cause for doctors. In a general survey report, it was seen that a person who works at an office, spends an average of almost 10-12 hours of sitting in a day.
In contrast, an agriculturist or a physical worker might spend only 3 hours sitting. Along with sitting in office, people also sit during commuting and in front of the TV. There is complete lack of physical activity and movements and this has potential risks.
Link of sitting and obesity
Weight management is an important concern with which many people are plagued in this modern world. The basic principle of weight management is spending more calories and losing more weight. When few calories are burnt, it automatically leads to weight gain.
People who lead a sedentary lifestyle tend to accumulate all the calories that they obtain from the food they eat and gain weight in the process. Thus sedentary lifestyle has direct links with obesity.
When compared with sitting hours with lean people, obese people sit 2 hours more on an average, causing more damage to the body. Obesity is also a major contributor to heart disease and can aggravate things in a bad manner.
People who have been diagnosed with heart disorders and are obese at the same time are recommended to work out so that the extra calories are shed off successfully. It is recommended to work out under a trainer.
Various kinds of ailments make your body their home with sedentary behavior
Different types of chronic diseases and health conditions are related to sedentary behavior. Medical research has proved that there is an increased risk of getting type 2 diabetes with sedentary lifestyle and chances of acquiring various kinds of heart diseases.
Risks of cardiovascular diseases increase considerably with this. Insulin resistance and type-2 diabetes has been the main area of concern for researchers who are working on how sedentary lifestyle affects the human health.
Chances of insulin resistance increase when people walk less in a day or sit for long stretches of time without keeping any control on the calorie intake. The scary part is that the impact on insulin resistance can take place very quickly.
Early death has been linked to prolonged sitting and sedentary lifestyle
The connection of early death and prolonged sitting is quite unnerving. Observational data and statistics reports from more than 1 million people show that early death is closely related to sedentary lifestyle. And the percentage of risk factor is not less.
People who sit for long periods of time or lead a sedentary lifestyle have less of their body parts working when compared to people who lead an extremely active lifestyle. Non-functioning of the body parts lead to their gradual damage.
Exercising might reduce the risks of sedentary behavior but not eliminate the same
Many people think that following an exercise regimen can help in warding off the ill-effects of prolonged sitting or a sedentary lifestyle. It is true that exercises can reduce the risks of prolonged sitting, but they cannot eliminate the same completely.
People who need to spend the whole day sitting for professional reasons will not benefit much with just one hour of exercise. The harm caused by the inactivity phase cannot be compensated with the one hour of exercise. The rates of risks of health disorders can just be minimized, but not eradicated completely.
Few tips that can help you to minimize prolonged sitting & sedentary lifestyle habits.
• The only way of reducing the risks of prolonged sitting is by sitting less and being on one’s feet most of the time. Even if you have a desk job to do, try taking breaks after 15-30 minutes consistently. And taking a break means that you get up from the seat and walk around a little or at least stand for some time.
• Keeping a track of the calorie intake is also important. If you cannot avoid sitting at any cost, manage it from another side. Minimize the calorie intake as much as possible as your body will not need that amount of energy while sitting and working.
• Do some free hand exercises in between work. These exercises can be done right in the work station and you don’t need to move out of the place for the same. With these exercises, you will be able to improve blood circulation to all parts of the body successfully.
• Always stand up while you are on the phone.
• Walk after you eat your lunch or dinner.
• Try to use staircase instead of lifts while at office or home.
• When you brush your teeth try working your calves!
• Park your car farther away from your destination.
• If you are a couch potato with the TV remote in hand, stop the habit right away. Sitting in front of the TV for a long span of time is harmful for the body as well as for the mind. Also refrain from sitting and watching TV after you get back from office, spending the whole day in sitting. Instead go out for a stroll in the nearby park and get some fresh air.
Always find ways in your daily routine to move more and STAND UP for your HEALTH!
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