A Quarter of Americans Sit for More Than Eight Hours A Day: Do You?

In a recent report released by US News, 26% of the nearly 5,900 Americans polled report that they sit for more than eight hours a day. 11% of all respondents, or around one in ten, reported sitting for more than eight hours a week and not getting vigorous exercise in at other points during the week. With rates of blood pressure, hypertension, and heart disease on the rise, sitting for more than eight hours a day can play a role in the acquisition of these diseases.

Sitting, in and of itself, isn’t harmful so much as being sedentary is. If you were to lay down for eight hours a day and not sleep, it would be just as bad as sitting is for you. The metabolic consequences of not using your legs is partially responsible for the spike in heart disease and hypertension, too. If you do plan on sitting for a long period of time, stand up to walk to the bathroom, take stretch breaks, or fidget at your desk to mitigate some of the effects of sitting on your body. According to a new update to the U.S Physical Activity Guidelines, even getting two minutes of walking time in can have lasting health benefits.

Research in this area has found that even if you do an hour of intense exercise after you sit at your desk all day, it won’t eliminate all of the negative effects. Take steps in your own office to help get you and your coworkers moving. You can try investing in a standing or treadmill desk, having walking meetings, or taking the stairs to and from your office every morning.

Have any comments about the researcher’s findings, or want to know more about steps you can take to stay active? Let us know by leaving a comment below!

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