Sedentary Lifestyle Is Denting Your Health

By Team Adesso | Posted Jul 4, 2024

Sedentariness is being seated and otherwise physically inactive for extended periods of time; it’s increasingly becoming a norm in many societies. Many of us work either in an office or at home mostly in the confines of our chairs. Work bogs us down and before you know it, hours have gone by without taking any sort of break, be it to stand up, use the bathroom, or do anything else. Or we get engaged in a book that’s a real page-turner, look up and it’s been three hours since we left our book nook. While this might seem harmless, the sedentary lifestyle can have a negative impact on the physical and mental health particularly of women. 

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Sedentary can be defined as any activity that requires less than or equal to 1.5 metabolic equivalents (METS) of energy expenditure, such as sitting or lying down for prolonged periods. This means activities like watching TV, using the computer, or reading are classified as sedentary behaviors. 


Consequences of Sedentary Behavior


Studies have revealed that sedentary behavior leads to an increased risk of chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension, obesity, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and even premature death. Furthermore, it has been linked to depression and anxiety disorders in women. This is because sedentariness reduces the body’s ability to burn calories efficiently, leading to weight gain which can increase the risk for these conditions. Additionally, prolonged sitting has been associated with poor posture which can lead to back pain.


How Can We Remedy This?


It’s important to recognize the extent of your own sedentariness to take actionable steps towards improving your health. If you are sitting for most of the day at work or school, try to get up and move around every hour or two—even if that simply means taking a walk around the block or stretching at your desk. Being aware of how much time you spend sitting can help you take control of your own health and well-being.


Additionally, engaging in regular physical activities such as walking or jogging can help reduce the risks associated with being sedentary. Finally, making healthy food choices will also help reduce weight gain caused by too much sitting down.


The good news is that research has also shown that small changes in daily habits can make a big difference when it comes to reducing the effects of sedentariness on our health. 


But I’m Physically Active


You might be saying to yourself that you work out each morning or evening so does this conversation really apply to you. If you get 30 minutes of moderate exercise every day but sit for eight hours a day at work, you could still be considered physically inactive overall because of your high level of sedentariness throughout the rest of the day. But research shows that engaging in regular physical activity can counteract some of the negative effects associated with too much sitting.


Start Tracking Yourself and Moving Forward


It’s important to recognize how much time you spend engaging in these types of activities so that you can take steps towards improving your health through increased physical activity and decreased sitting time. Additionally, regular physical activity has been linked to counteracting some of the negative effects associated with too much sitting—so don’t forget about fitting regular exercise into your daily routine! 


Taking charge of both sedentariness and physical activity levels can have a positive impact on your overall health and well-being.