Much has been in the media lately about the dangers of sitting… or more accurately, the danger of not being active. Computers and other screen devices have brought our lives to a grinding halt, literally. We sit, slouch, and lie more than we stand and walk; as a result, our health and mortality are paying the price.
Research out of Toronto, Canada has discovered that sedentary behavior has been associated with:
- A 15 to 20 % higher risk of death from any cause;
- A 15 to 20 % higher risk of heart disease, death from heart disease, cancer, death from cancer;
- As much as a 90 per cent increased risk of developing diabetes;
… and for the worst news, this is all after adjusting for regular exercise.
But all is not lost! There are many opportunities for increasing your activity during the day, all of which are quite easy to do. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Move around often when sitting – change position, straighten and bend your joints, fidget, anything that is movement;
- Walk every hour and stand every 20 minutes;
- Use a sit-stand desk – sit for 45 minutes and stand for 15 every hour;
- Stand and/or walk during meetings, phone calls, while reading documents, or any time you can;
- Take the stairs whenever you can during your day;
- Walk or bike to work;
- Park your car in the furthest parking spot;
- Use your lunch hour to do something fun – take a kickboxing or Zumba class, get a walking group going, window shop without stopping;
- Do a stretch for every body part each hour of your day;
- Get up every second commercial when watching TV;
- Walk your dog every night – or borrow somebody else’s!
If you have any other ideas for movement, please share below. Everyone can benefit from a more active life.