Excessive sitting has remained a debated issue and a hot topic for leading researchers for years. Now medical scientists have proven that heart diseases and cancers are more prevalent in people who spend most of their daytime sitting in a chair. The American Heart Association has given its general decision on this issue as prolonged sitting is the same as chain-smoking for its harmful impacts on human lungs, heart, and blood circulation.
What Are the Basic Facts to Be Known About Excessive Sitting?
The essential points to know about excessive sitting include:
1. Office bearers in the modern world have adopted a 'no chair' lifestyle at the workplace. The developed countries have moved from chair to 'on feet' style of working. You will see very few people sitting in a chair while working in this modern world. Physicians, surgeons, chiropractors, physical therapists, scientists, pharmacists, store managers, and the modern era's business tycoons are all on their feet when in office.
Because all executive and business class personnel have very little time for physical activity and cannot afford their time when they return home, thus, the modern medical world adopted a routine for humanity that uses the advantage of an office without chairs. It also advises people to stand on the counters longer while on duty.
2. One more fact I want to add here is that some people adopt a routine of regular physical activity when they get free from the office after a whole day spent in a chair at work. But internal medicine researchers have recently confirmed that people who spend more time sitting have a greater risk of mortality from cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes mellitus type 2, even though they do regular physical activity.
So it is a proven fact now. Not only a morning walk or an evening gym is necessary for a healthy heart and a disease-free body, but you also need to remain standing and moving on your feet during the whole day unless prohibited by the nature of your job.
Let me explain to the public this fact with the help of an example from everyday life. The research has proved an increased mortality rate due to myocardial infarction (heart attack) amongst the bus drivers compared to the bus conductors. Because the bus drivers spend most of their time sitting behind the wheels and the conductors spend their time moving around.
3. Scientists used to curse obesity as the mother of all diseases. But recently published research has proved that an inactive lifestyle and excessive sitting causes deaths twice more than obesity. So, maintaining a good BMI (Body Mass Index) and weight within the normal range is not needed for a healthy life and a disease-free body. We have to stay away from sedentary and less active lifestyle habits.
4. If we see the definition of work in physics, it says that a person is considered to have zero work done even if he has picked up a weight of 30 kilograms and remained still where he is. Physics believes that you need to give work to the body by walking for some distance while carrying some weight for work. So, people sitting in a chair and solving one thousand daily tasks are considered to have zero work done according to the scientific rules. Medical science also confirms these facts today.
5. To move, walk, run or jog at a healthy pace, there is an important fact to remember while going out for exercise. Everyone should do a regular brisk physical activity 15 to 20 minutes a day to suffice this need. It is more effective than the strenuous activity done for three continuous hours per week.
Research done by the American Cancer Society confirms that women who sit for a long time have a greater risk of acquiring cancers than active and less sitting women. Cancers include ovarian or breast carcinomas and multiple myelomas.
What Are the Basic Lifestyle Modifications Needed to Avoid Excessive Sitting?
A few lifestyle modifications are needed to avoid excessive sitting and save a person from various diseases.
If you are the boss, you need to hold a meeting and do a standing meeting instead of a sitting one.
Indulge yourself in something that needs walking at your workplace, even if you are the boss. Being boss never means that you have to compromise your health as you have your own family who needs you to remain healthy.
If you need to place a long hour call, do it while walking.
You can watch television or operate a laptop while standing.
Park your car away from the place you are going to so that you are compelled to walk a bit more while shopping, doing the job, or doing other tasks. It is best to use public transport because it gives you more walking time and keeps you healthy.
Do household duties (pressing the clothes or folding the pressed laundry) while standing instead of sitting.
When you are advised to sit for a long time, take a two to three-minute break and try to stand out of the chair for a while.
What Are the Benefits Obtained by Avoiding Excessive Sitting?
People who have a less sedentary lifestyle have better control over their normal body functioning.
1) Their blood pressure remains in limits even in the presence of other inevitable risk factors.
2) Cholesterol and glucose levels remain in the normal range.
3) Cancer risk and toxic metabolite accumulation in the body are far lessened.
4) The risk for coronary artery disease is reduced significantly.
5) The endocrine and immune systems of the body remain optimal at work.
6) Females and males remain sexually healthy if they are physically active.
A person following an inactive lifestyle is wholly responsible for the health issues developed in their body. Under the causes of several diseases, excessive sitting might also serve as one of their causes because excessive sitting creates various health issues in the body. Periodic medical check-ups are necessary to watch their illnesses before they cause extreme trouble. Avoid them by adopting an active lifestyle rather than leading an inactive lifestyle to have a healthy body.