Did you know that Sitting too long can kill you? Well, this seems true after a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that excessive sedentary time could lead to Premature Death, even if with exercise.

It is already a known fact that the United States is facing a burgeoning health crisis on obesity, where more than 50 percent of the population is affected by it. According to public health experts, the nation’s obesity epidemic is caused by American’s sedentary lifestyles and intake of processed foods.

Too much sitting

Researchers at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City found that sitting for long periods of time could increase the risk for an early death, regardless if the individual is exercising regularly. In fact, too much sitting could double increase the risk of dying over a four-year period compared to those who sit only for shorter periods.

That is why researchers are urging people to take a break from sitting every 30 minutes to walk or move around since they found this could be helpful in reducing the risks. Keith Diaz, lead study author and associate research scientist at the Center for Behavioral Cardiovascular Health at Columbia University Medical Center, also stressed that people should never take the importance of “moving frequently throughout the day” for granted, Reuters noted.

Exercise is not enough

The recent research also highlighted the finding that humans need more than just exercising to stay fit and healthy. Diaz explained that people to have to move and do more when it comes to breaking up their sedentary habits or lifestyles to reduce the risk of premature deaths.

Diaz also took notice of the reality that several individuals are sitting for up to 10 hours daily. Since too much sitting makes our muscles inactive, the blood sugar in the body is not utilized.

This could lead to poor blood sugar control, which Diaz believed could be on the reasons why sitting for too long increases a person’s risk of heart disease or death, The Inquirer Daily News reported.

University of Toronto’s associate professor of medicine Dr. David Alter added that the recent findings suggested that people should only not avoid Excessive sedentary time. In fact, Alter said that the ideal solutions to decrease the risks might include a “combination of exercise, light activity, and frequent movement breaks.”

Study limitations

The recent study is not the first time that experts found a connection between sedentary time and risks of death.

Even though the previous studies were dependent on the length of time the participants spent sitting in a day, the new research measured the sitting periods through a hip-mounted accelerometer, which tracked the movement.

The researchers, however, warned about the study’s limitations. As per Diaz, their findings only showed the link between early death and too much sitting but it can’t prove that it causes a risk. He added that they were also not able to determine the exact association of prolonged sitting and early death.

‘Sit less, move more’

Meanwhile, the study seems to support the advice of the American Heart Association, which is to “sit less and move more,” CNN noted.

But Diaz stressed that people need a specific guideline for sitting, just like the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) recommendation for adults to do a two-hour and 30-minute moderate aerobic exercise weekly.

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