The Inactivity Pandemic

Wednesday, 31. August 2016

The Inactivity Pandemic

Sitting is the new "smoking", rumor has it, it is equally bad for you. Is that that true? Is physical inactivity really so harmful?

Recently, the results of a new meta-analysis have been published. Researchers analyzed the results of 16 separate studies with data from a total of one million people. The results are sobering.

The harmful effects of physical inactivity

Prolonged sitting can be as unhealthy as smoking. It contributes to shortening your life because lack of exercise increases the risk of diabetes, some cancers and heart disease.

Inactivity increases

Lack of exercise is on the rise worldwide. Statistically, we spend today 50-70% of a day in a sitting position. It's an ascending trend.

This is not really surprising. In times of increasing automation, there are fewer and fewer jobs that require working physically and more jobs which are characterized by sedentary activities. A nightly television program and lack of enthusiasm for sports contributes to the rest. No wonder that back pain is one of the most common causes of sick leave today

WHO recommendations?

The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends getting two and a half hours of exercise a week to reduce the negative effects of a sedentary lifestyle. Is that really enough? A new study comes to a different conclusion. It shows that two and a half hours per week are not enough. An hour of exercise daily. is recommended. This would allow the negative effects of eight hours per day of sitting to be compensated.

Movement is not sports

Rest assured, everyone, who is thinking "I don't have time for an hour of sports a day!" It's all about movement, so activities such as brisk walking, gardening, or cycling also count. Do whatever possible to incorporate exercise into everyday life. Go for a walk during your lunch break, give up the elevator for the stairs and go walking or ride your bike to work instead of the tram. There are many ways to make small changes. If you add up all these changes, it's more than you think. 

Move deliberately and stay healthy!