Did you go for a jog this morning or plan a workout at the gym this evening?
If so, that’s great… but if you think that’s going to keep you from dying a premature death you could be wrong.
According to a study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, those who sit for over six hours a day have a significantly higher mortality rate regardless of how much they exercise.
After reviewing the records of over 120,000 adults studied from 1993 to 2006, researchers found sitting for over six hours a day corresponded with a 37% increase in mortality for women and 18% for men.
But that’s not all. Those who failed to fit any real physical activity into their schedule at all were much worse off. Men who skipped exercise altogether and sat around instead had nearly a 50% greater risk of dying than those who sat around less than 3 hours a day, while risk of death for women doing the same nearly doubled.
A similar study out of Australia found watching TV for four or more hours a day increases your risk of dying by almost 50% over those who watch TV for just two hours a day.
Now if you’re one of those who think exercise is a 4-letter word, there’s still hope for you. Because the solution is simple.
Get out of your chair.
While exercise is important, simply getting up and moving around rather than sitting for hours on end improves your odds of living another year.
So yes, it’s comfortable and convenient to just sit down and glue yourself to the television or computer screen. But if you think getting out of your chair is inconvenient, try dying. Never convenient.
Patel, AV, et al. Leisure time spent sitting in relation to total mortality in a prospective cohort of US adults. American Journal of Epidemiology. 2010 Aug 15;172(4):419-29.
Dunstan DW, et al. Television viewing time and mortality: the Australian Diabetes, Obesity and Lifestyle Study (AusDiab). Circulation. 2010;121(3):384—391