Sitting on the Dangers of Inactivity

2010-09-27 | |
Last updated: 2010-09-27

Metabolic Syndrome Due To Inactivity

Such news is more disheartening when we also consider that statistics show that anywhere between 25% to 35% of US adults are inactive. The outlook only looks worse when we combine these results with research from the Swedish School of Sport and Health Sciences that has found a measurable connection with idle time in front of the television and risks for Metabolic Syndrome.

According to the International Diabetes Federation, Metabolic Syndrome occurs when good cholesterol levels are reduced, levels of fat in the blood are raised, blood pressure is increased and blood sugar is raised beyond normal levels, putting individuals at risk for diabetes, heart disease and cancer. With the study having indicated that each hour of television raises the risk of Metabolic Syndrome by 26% and the average American watching more than 5 hours of television daily according to the Nielsen tracking service, most Americans are increasing their risk of the condition by 130%. For the most part, this is outside of work hours.

Increased Risk of Dying Because Of Inactivity

Unfortunately, it is not just these risks of disease that are increased. Based on a study of more than 120,000 US citizens by the American Cancer Society, researchers found that regardless of any physical activity, the amount of time spent sitting contributed to the overall risks of death. Their research found that in men and women who sat for more than 6 hours per day, the chances of dying were 18% and 37% higher respectively as compared to those who only sat for 3 hours each day. For men and women who were inactive outside of work as well, the risks were 48% higher for men and 94% higher for women. Quite clearly, inactivity at home and having a desk job poses serious health concerns.


Certainly this research news does not bode well for the health of all of us around the world as we migrate to the cities from the country and adapt technologies that continue to make many of us more sedentary. For almost 200,000 years we have been walking, running and generally moving, but having reached a comfortable spot, it seems like most of us have sat down. While a 60 year break may have seemed like a good idea, it is high time to figure out how to get moving again.

Are you taking new steps to become active or feeling the health effects of inactivity? Share your experiences in the health forums.

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Category: Disease Prevention, General Health, Health Risks, Medical Research

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