The facts are clear: too many people are eating healthy to stay slim, but ignoring the effects not getting enough movement has on your body.
What if I told you that even if you’re eating healthy and going to the gym regularly – you’d could still be putting your health in danger just from being sat down too much? That’s right – if you’re sat down for too long, too often, even the most dedicated of athlete risks endangering themselves in a variety of ways. The World Health Organisation say 1 in 4 of us is insufficiently active and is risking our health because of it. This number rises dramatically in developed nations where technology and convenience has reduced the amount of movement demanded of us day to day. So how are we being effected?
This one is pretty simple – people who are getting regular, daily exercise that pushes their bodies sleep much better than those that don’t. Active people report less daytime sleepiness, and when the time comes are twice as likely to sleep through the night than their lazier counterparts.
Totally invisible and yet the biggest killer of young men in the UK – increasingly poor mental health has been connected to the more sedentary lifestyles many of us lead even compared to a generation or two ago. Sitting in a chair for 6 hours a day has been associated with a 90% increase in psychological distress in comparison to people who sat for 3 hours a day or less. It can also increase feelings of anxiety, your risk of developing dementia, and even your *ahem* abilities in the bedroom.
A sedentary lifestyle has been associated with various kinds of cancer, including:
- 24% higher risk of developing colon cancer
- 32% higher risk of endometrial cancer
- 21% higher risk of lung cancer
In addition to those more direct links – sitting and watching TV has also been linked to high body fat and thus increased cancer risk too due to the sugary and salty snacks we tend to devour when binge watching Netflix at 3am. Something to think about the next time you bin off plans to stay in and have a Netflix day.
Not getting enough activity in your life day to day can wreck havoc on your blood sugar levels; enough in fact to double your chances of having blood sugar levels that would be considered ‘prediabetes’. Even people within a “healthy” BMI range were effected as many of these people were part of an emerging ‘skinny fat’ group that has a healthy weight, but poor fat to muscle ratios. This has been linked to all sorts of cardiovascular issues like higher blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol levels.
The answer is as clear as it is boring. You’ve probably been told it a million times. We need to start working sensible amounts of time where we’re up and active into our lives. A great start might be having a look at the MagnaPass timetable and seeing what you might fancy having a go at in the next week. That and not sitting so much – so go for a 5 minute walk. Get a coffee or something.
Just stop sitting down.