A major problem of public health is leading a sedentary lifestyle. Despite being connected to a variety of chronic health problems, sedentary lifestyles have become more and more prevalent in many countries.
Many individuals with a sedentary lifestyle would probably not comply with the national recommendations on physical activity. Research has shown that the physical activity of adults should be at least 150 minutes a week.
Health risks of sedentary lifestyle and physical inactivity
Some of the major health problems due to sedentary lifestyle are;
1. Cardiovascular Health
Adults, schoolchildren, and young people have an association between greater sedentary behavior and an increased cardiovascular risk. The risk of cardiovascular events was raised by 5 percent or 17 percent when an individual has two hours a day of screen time and sitting time.
Rising blood pressure among infants, teenagers, and adults has been linked to increased sedentary behavior. Interrupting sitting time in young girls has been associated with improved vascular function and endothelial function in adults.
Increased risk for cancer, endometrial cancer, colon cancer, and breast cancer has been linked with sedentary behavior.
Although sedentary behavior and certain forms of cancer have a link that can reduce both in body mass (BMI) and in the physical, researchers still indicate that the risk of cancer mortality for adults (aged from 50-71) who watched TV for more than 1 hour a day was 22 percent higher than those who saw TV less than one hour each day.
Sitting is a significant underlying mechanism for increasing cancer risk. Adiposity (excess weight of the body) could promote carcinogenesis through insulin resistance, chronic inflammation, increased sex hormone levels, and altered adipokine secretion.
3. Diabetes (Type 2)
There has been a positive connection among adults, regardless of physical activity, between sedentary behavior and type 2 diabetes. People who watch TV for more than 2-3 hours a day had a 20% higher risk of Type 2 diabetes.
Interruption in regularly sitting along with activity bouts of more than one may be more beneficial than just a 30-minute walk that could lead to a decrease in the postprandial level of glucose and insulin.
Light intensity breaks are linked to substantial decreases in postprandial (after meal) blood glucose and insulin levels. It does not include standing as physical activity.
4. Weight Gain
A positive link between body and sitting composition, heart fat, liver fat, visceral fat, and waist circumference was established in 2015, independent of the physical activity. Interruptions to sit and step were correlated with lower BMI values and waist circumference, but the proof remains uncertain.
It has been suggested by researchers that watching television could cause children and adults to be obese. However, the correlation between unhealthy eating and physical inactivity can be a contribution to this association. The evidence is limited that sedentary behavior, weight gain, and obesity risk are a longitudinal relationship between adults.
5. Muscle Degeneration
Reduction in muscle mass and strength (sarcopenia) associated with age negatively affects on elderly independence, which raises their risks of falling.
Your locomotor muscles remain inactive most of the day when they are sedentary.
If adults who are older watch TV for at least six hours a day can have a weaker grip than those, who watch TV for less than two hours a day.
For instance, climbing stairs compared to sitting leads to greater muscle activity than walking.
6. Mental health
A negative influence on mental health has been observed with a sedentary lifestyle.
The combined physical and mental health effects result in making sedentary lifestyles problematic.
In a survey of 10,381 people, there was a greater potential to develop mental health disorders with a sedentary lifestyle and lack of physical activity.
A recent study of 110,152 participants found a link between sedentary activity and a higher risk of depression.
7. Back/Neck Pain
The major cause of inability and one of the main risk factors for absenteeism is lower back pain in regards to occupational health.
A positive relation has been observed for pain in both low back and neck shoulder in blue-collar employees.
There has been a reduction of 32 percent in lower back pain when overweight or obese employees were asked to interrupt their sitting at work in comparison to the seated work.
However, there is currently not enough evidence to establish a correlation, regardless of other factors, between occupational, screen-based sitting and Musculoskeletal pain in both children and adults both.
8. Mortality and sedentary lifestyle
A higher risk of all-cause mortality from 24 to 49 percent has been correlated with sedentary behavior.
It remains uncertain if physical activity reduces the connection. In standing/walking jobs, the risk of all-cause mortality may be lower, especially among women.
Lower risk for all-cause mortality was associated with maintaining and reducing the sitting time low in American post-menopausal women. The risks of all-cause mortality seemed to have decreased for Australians aged 45 or above due to increased standing time.
If TV was watched for more than two hours, it was associated with a 13% increase in risk.
Solutions to a sedentary lifestyle
The risk of chronic health problems, mental health issues, and premature death can be greatly reduced by a more active life.
Increasing physical activity
The research has shown that the risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and early death can be decreased by physical activity, including exercise and sport.
It is best to incorporate a range of cardiovascular workouts, such as running or cycling, with workouts that may require weightlifting or bodyweight training. It will be enough to follow physical activity recommendations for at least three 30 minutes of run and two 30 minutes of strength training sessions each week.
Reducing the time spent being sedentary.
Physical activity is significant, but a sedentary lifestyle is dangerous for you.
The time people spend being sedentary can be reduced:
- You can stand instead of sitting on public transports.
- If your office is close enough, you can walk to your work.
- Try walking in between the lunch breaks.
- Set reminders and move after every 30 minutes when you are working at a desk.
- Take a walk while having your coffee or tea breaks.
- If possible, ask your workplace to provide you with a standing desk.
- While attending phone calls, have a little walk around at the same time.
- Do not sit idle in-home try doing different chores around the house, especially at DIY or gardening
- Always use stairs instead of elevators.
- Mobilize during the commercial breaks of television.
- Try moving around yourself at work.
- spend some free time actively instead of watching TV or video games
Stay active in the house
You should follow the following tips to stay active around the house:
- Physical activity can be increased by doing chores of the house, planting, and yardwork. You should try to increase the speed at a more energetic rate.
- While watching tv, try to engage yourself with some exercises at the same time, for example, hand weight exercises or gentle yoga stretches, or a cycling machine. Instead of changing channels from the remote, try mobilizing yourself till the tv set to change channels.
- Workout by browsing workout videos from the internet or TV.
- Walk around while using or talking on your mobile phone.
- Have a walk around your neighborhood. If you have a dog, take the dog for a walk. Walk your kids go to school or have a walk with a friend; it can be more interesting.
- Purchase exercise equipment in your home. Set up treadmills and elliptical trainers if possible. Less costly equipment such as yoga balls, stretch bands, exercise mats, and hand weights are also beneficial while doing a home workout.
Stay active at work
- The majority of us are working commonly Infront of a computer. Actually, fewer than 20% of Americans work physically. It might be difficult to adapt the physical activity to your busy workday, but here are some tips for getting around.
- Move around if you are constantly sitting for an hour.
- Have a little walk while talking on the phone.
- Instead of communicating on mobile phones, walk to a colleague’s office.
- Check if the company has a treadmill or standup desk.
- Instead of the elevators, always take the stairs.
- At lunchtime or break, walk around for a while.
- Instead of conference rooms, try engaging in meetings with coworkers in walking or standing meeting.
Importance of physical activity
Research has associated a sedentary lifestyle with serious conditions of health. Many individuals do not fulfill the requirements for minimum physical activity and are at risk of developing different medical conditions due to a sedentary lifestyle.
People can minimize the risk of a sedentary lifestyle by increasing their physical exercise and using the above methods to reduce the amount of time they spend sedentary.