Got a desk job? If you don't move all day, it may nullify your exercise attempts.
Driving, desk jobs and TV has made us a nation of sitters. We've known that's unhealthy, but new research is showing that six hours of continuous sitting affects fitness levels negatively about the same as 1 hour of exercise affects them positively. However, if you move regularly throughout the day, even just shifting in your seat, it's associated with better fitness.
PositiveTip: Take regular "move-breaks": pace on the phone, stand and think, take shorts walks.
Little couch potatoes experience decreased motor coordination.
Kids who spend more than 3/4 of the day sedentary have worse coordination than those who are more active. A recent study shows that boys who spent more than 76% of the day in front of a computer screen or TV were 9.2 times more likely to have poor coordination, and girls 5.1 times. The authors noted that periods of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity during periods of the day may not overcome high levels of sedentary behavior.
PositiveTip: Parents: make sure your kids are getting plenty of physical activity!
A lifetime of even light exercise protects from PAD.
PAD (peripheral arterial disease) is a problem getting a lot of media attention today. A study of 1381 patients already at high-risk for atherosclerotic disease found that inactive people were almost twice as likely to have PAD as those who reported the most active lives (25.6% vs. 13.7%, p=0.001). Even light activity such as a regular evening stroll was found to be protective.
PositiveTip: Get off the couch and go for walk or some other form of physical activity daily.
Watching more than 4 hours of TV a day dramatically increases premature death.
A study of nearly 9000 Australians compared those who watched 2 hours or less of TV per day to those who watched more than 4 hours. Those watching the most had a 46% increased risk in death from all causes, and an 80% increased risk for death by cardiovascular disease. This connection stayed consistent even after adjusting for other independent risk factors.
PositiveTip: Too much sitting is bad for your health. Remember to get up and move more, and do it more often.
Couch potatoes beware - every hour of TV time may increase your risk of dying early.
Researchers in Australia followed the lifestyle habits of almost 9000 adults for more than six years. They found that each hour of daily TV viewing was connected with an 11% increased risk for death from all causes, an 18% higher risk for cardiovascular deaths, and even a 9% increase in death from cancer.
PositiveTip: The human body was designed for activity and movement. Avoid sitting for extended periods of time for optimal health.
Our bodies are designed to have a lot of things in twos: two eyes, two ears, two hands, two legs, two feet, two kidneys, two lungs and so on. For many of these body parts, we can live without having both - just one ear or even just one lung.
But we only have one heart.
The heart is the one organ that has to keep on beating every second of the day to keep us alive. We do not have the luxury of letting the doctor cut half of it off if it is diseased and keep breathing with half a heart.
Working overtime is bad for your heart.