Sitting is the new smoking

27 February 2018


Last year, sitting was declared the new smoking. The reason: Sitting at your desk all day would be just as dangerous to your health as a cigarette. But why? And is sitting really as disastrous as claimed? Five facts about sitting as the new smoking.

Fact # 1 The more time you spend sitting, the more risk you run on all sorts of ailments and illnesses. Research by the University of Leicester among 800,000 people shows that those who sat the longest were twice as likely to have diabetes and had nearly 2.5 times the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Fact # 2 If you sit on the couch or in a chair, you are hardly using any muscles. Leading to sugars and fats not being absorbed from your blood as quickly. As a result, you have a greater chance of developing diabetes or cardiovascular diseases. You can easily counteract this by putting your muscles to work. So let’s move!

Fact # 3 You live up to two years longer if you sit down for less than three hours a day. This was one of the conclusions of a study that appeared in the British Medical Journal. Sitting less than 3 hours a day is not an easy task, but it is not impossible either. Send your e-mails while standing, have your meetings whilst walking, walk around during the call.

Fact # 4 Out of all Europeans, Dutch people sit down the most. To be more precise: they sit down for an average of 7 hours or more. For Germans this is ‘only’ 5.8 hours a day. Belgians spend 5.7 hours sitting on a typical day. Let’s face it, there is some serious ‘moving’ to do in our country.

Fact # 5 Unfortunately compensating prolonged sitting by exercising more often doesn’t do the trick. Someone who works out a lot, but sits down a lot too still runs a higher risk of health complaints. The trick is to simply move more during your office days.

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