Nowadays, people spend a lot of time sitting down – at home, at work and while traveling.
Sitting for an average of 13 hours and sleeping an average of 8 hours can result in a sedentary position for about 21 hours a day.
According to health experts, “sitting is the new smoking” as it is simply harmful to your health.
In a study in 2012, which was published in JAMA Internal Medicine, it revealed that prolonged sitting is a risk factor for all-cause mortality, independent of physical activity.
Moreover, a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine in 2015 has shed light on the fact that that prolonged sedentary time was independently associated with adverse health outcomes regardless of physical activity.
Here Is Why Sitting For Too Long Is Dangerous To Your Health
Higher Cancer Risk
A sedentary lifestyle is linked to increased uterine, colorectal, ovarian lung, colon, endometrial, and prostate cancer risk.
There were factors playing a key role between sedentary behavior and increased cancer risk. One of these is obesity which is a major factor for multiple cancers.
Moreover, sitting after meals is related to higher blood sugar levels, which in turn increases the risk of colon cancer.
If you have to sit in the same position for long hours it would be better if you take regular breaks.
More Belly Fat
A strong connection was found between the increase in body fat, especially around the waist and sedentary lifestyle. Your body will not be able to burn fat if you do not move around or exercise often.
According to a study published in the American Journal of Physiology – Cell Physiology, moving and exercising help the muscle release molecules, such as lipoprotein lipase which play a key role in processing the sugars and fats that you consume.
These sugar and fats are not processed properly when you sit for prolonged periods thus leading to fat accumulation in the abdominal area.
Weak Legs And Glutes
Your legs and glutes are going to suffer if you have a habit of doing your desk job for hours without taking any breaks.
The muscle fibers on legs tend to break down if they are not used for hours. This occurrence is known as muscle atrophy and over time, can make your leg muscles weak. Sitting can also impact the strength of your glutes and mobility of your hips.
Weak legs and glutes affect your stability when you stand or walk around. This increases the risk of falls.
Unhealthy Blood Sugar Levels
People who lead a sedentary lifestyle and spend more time sitting are at an increased risk of diabetes. More sedentary time is independently associated with impaired glucose, insulin resistance, and diabetes.
Additionally, prolonged sitting can make your pancreas produce more insulin, which can lead to diabetes.
Prolonged sitting can negatively affect your heart. Sitting for hours in the same place can lead to poor blood flow to all body parts, including the heart.
Due to poor blood flow, fats and plaque easily clog your heart thereby leading to elevated cholesterol, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular diseases.
Mental Health Issues
It is not good for your mental health if you will be sitting all day behind a desk. It can affect the blood flow and oxygen around your brain, thus affecting your brain function which over time can make your brain foggy and you may be unable to focus clearly on even the most fundamental tasks.
But when you move around, more fresh blood and oxygen reach the brain, which triggers the release of mood-enhancing chemicals.
Back and Neck Pain
Longer seated position and poor posture is bad for your back and neck. Sitting puts more pressure on your spine and compresses the disks in your spine which can further lead to premature degeneration resulting in chronic pain.
Moreover, it can make your muscles to pull, strain or cramp when stretched suddenly. It can also cause pain in the muscles in your back and neck.