This website is all about getting more healthy by making dietary and activity changes and sticking with them for life. There are lingering questions that we have as people trying to be healthy in this country. Obviously, with obesity having its way with so many of us – we want to know who we can sue.
One question that comes up is: are we unhealthy as we age because of eating bad food or not eating enough good food? Likewise, if we eat bad food and balance it with good food are we going to be fine?
In a like manner, with exercise, is it the exercise that helps or is exercise mearly the absence of sitting which is the enemy of health? This is now a hot topic and I’ll show some links that provide evidence that a person who sits all day and then exercises hard for an hour will be less healthy than a person that spends the day off the chair and exercises an hour. The conclusions are that sitting is a dangerous inactivity that correlates proportionatly with lethal diseases. The changes come fast with being sedentary and are reproducable in our rodent friends. Leg muscles are at rest in the sitting position and are responsible for most of the production of useful chemicals but only when they are being used.
Things to think about:
Trading jobs to do more standing at work
Walking or biking to work
Do your belly breathing when if you catch yourself sitting (healthy step 5)
Do isometric exercises when you sit
If you are sitting try to get up each hour and walk around a bit
Convert TV time to walking
Don’t let any of your family watch food ads on TV
The following link also discusses difficulty being productive with the standing desk.
Travis Saunders writes a similar piece quoting other articles testing the concept that sitting hours are deadly.
He is an exercise physiologist.
“In 2009 Dr Peter Katzmarzyk and colleagues at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center published an influential longitudinal paper examining the links between time spent sitting and mortality in a sample of more than 17,000 Canadians (available here). Not surprisingly, they report that time spent sitting was associated with increased risk of all-cause and cardiovascular disease mortality (there was no association between sitting and deaths due to cancer). But what is fascinating is that the relationship between sitting time and mortality was independent of physical activity levels. In fact, individuals who sat the most were roughly 50% more likely to die during the follow-up period than individuals who sat the least, even after controlling for age, smoking, and physical activity levels. Further analyses suggested that the relationship between sitting time and mortality was also independent of body weight. This suggests that all things being equal (body weight, physical activity levels, smoking, alcohol intake, age, and sex) the person who sits more is at a higher risk of death than the person who sits less.”
The things to remember are to plan physical activities into your day. When you catch yourself sitting, do isometrics or belly breathe. Get up and walk around each hour. Control your TV.