Sedentary Lifestyle- Effects and Management

Do you have a sedentary lifestyle? What are the bad effects and how best to manage them!

Modern-day improvements in transportation’s, food varieties, entertainments all considered essentials for survival, have pushed humans into a “sedentary mode”. A sedentary lifestyle is not just a choice of lifestyle for many but the mode of survival. True the concept of “couch potatoes” does exist. And many people choose the unhealthy option of not getting out of their home comforts, survive on junk food and try to burn up all those calories gained. Only by doing the activity of eating more junk. But the bad effects don’t spare one, even if the option of sedentary work- style is for those trying to earn their livelihood or some extra bucks. Your brain might burn out energy. But in actual, the fat accumulated in the body doesn’t.

What is sedentary lifestyle

A type of lifestyle where a person does limited or no physical activity.

Sedentary lifestyle effects

There are many proven authentic research studies that prove a huge correlation between the sedentary lifestyle and obesity and other morbid conditions like cardiovascular conditions (heart attacks, atherosclerosis etc.,). Hypertension, among others. These studies go on to prove that long periods of sitting at the same place, leads to numerous disastrous effects to your health. And the vicious cycle goes like this. Lack of physical activity, a minimum requirement of 150 minutes moderate exercise regimen or 90 minutes of vigorous exercise regimen, lead to the accumulation of bad cholesterol. This again leads to  obesity. Obesity itself isn’t a symptom but a disease and that further leads to harmful heart conditions. On the other hand, lower self-esteem as a result of disfiguring obesity, premature aging or anxiety due to the above-mentioned sedentary lifestyle health risks and conditions, can further exponentially increase the depression levels.

Long periods of sitting, can also affect your posture and spine curvature in the long run, as well decrease the skeletal muscle mass. The sedentary lifestyle diseases mentioned above, is not news to you.  But don’t want you to know how to combat them best? Read on find out!

Sedentary lifestyle management

As mentioned in the initial passage, for some people sedentary lifestyle or rather work-style is more a fundamental necessity than an injudicious decision. No matter which category you fall under, it’s better to follow some simple steps to keep these long-term crippling and exhausting conditions at bay.

1. Walk when you can:

Research studies prove that walking for a minimum period of 30 minutes at least 5 times a week is ideal. It  can reduce the Sedentary lifestyle risks associated with sedentary disuse syndrome and also with “sedentary death syndrome”. Avoid taking the escalators and lifts when you are not carrying heavy weights with you. Take the stairs. It burns 2-5 times more fat compared to when you take the lifts.

2. Stand, sit, Stand…

Does your job demand you to sit at the desk for long periods? Be sure you to take small walks, stand in your place at regular intervals for brief periods. This again reduces the contribution from the inactivity towards “disuse syndrome”.

3. Balanced diet

Avoid junk foods. Take a balanced diet. Better yet consult a dietician, and follow the diet chart. Maintain a healthy weight and BMI.

4. Keep your health in check

Go for regular check-ups if you have a familial risk for any of the morbid conditions mentioned. Also, if you are above the age of 40, even if not with a family history, make it point to visit your physician regularly and get assessed.

Remember Prevention is any time and at all times better than cure!!

 

References:

  1. Harrison’s Principle of Internal Medicine 19th Edition
  2. Impact of physical inactivity as a risk factor for chronic condition s: Australian Burden of Disease Study, 2017
  3. Physical Inactivity: Associated Diseases and Disorders by Joseph A. Knight (Department of Pathology, University of Utah School of Medicine; Salt Lake City, Utah, USA)
  4. A Brief Review on Correlates of Physical Activity and Sedentariness in Youth by VAN DER HORST, KLAZINE, PAW, MARIJKE J. CHINA, TWISK, JOS W. R, VAN MECHELEN, WILLEM, Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: August 2007 – Volume 39 – Issue 8 – p 1241-1250
  5. Associations of Sedentary Lifestyle, Obesity, Smoking, Alcohol Use, and Diabetes with the Risk of Colorectal Cancer by LoĂŻc Le Marchand, Lynne R. Wilkens, Laurence N. Kolonel, Jean H. Hankin and Li-Ching Lyu, DOI: Published November 1997
  6. Contribution of a sedentary lifestyle and inactivity to the etiology of overweight and obesity: current evidence and research issues by SUSAN A. JEBB; MELANIE S. MOORE
  7. The Escalating Pandemics of Obesity and Sedentary Lifestyle: A Call to Action for Clinicians by JoAnn E. Manson, MD, DrPH; Patrick J. Skerrett, MS; Philip Greenland, MD; et al
  8. Managing Sedentary Behavior to Reduce the Risk of Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease by Paddy C. Dempsey, Neville OwenStuart J. H. BiddleDavid W. Dunstan

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