The Risks of Inactivity
By Sara Butler
You’ve probably heard that sitting is the new smoking and it’s not all hype! Inactivity is a risk factor for chronic disease, which is why getting up and getting your body moving is so important. Researchers have found that sitting all day puts you at greater risk for certain diseases. Here are some of the risks you take when you don’t exercise and what you can do to reverse the damage all that sitting can do.
What Does It Mean to be Inactive?
Being physically inactive is what occurs anytime you’re not moving or standing. This includes when you watch television, drive in the car, or sit at your desk at work. Even people who exercise for the recommended 150 minutes per week can be considered active couch potatoes because they sit far too much when they’re not exercising.
When your life lacks physical activity, you increase the risk of developing:
- High blood pressure
- Type 2 diabetes
- Coronary artery disease
- Higher risk of falls
What You Can Do
It’s important to find ways to increase your activity level, especially if you have a sedentary job. You can get more movement during the day if you:
- Use a standing desk
- Take a walk after dinner
- Park far away from your building and walk
- Take public transportation
- Walk to talk to your co-worker instead of sending an email
- Stand up when you’re on the phone
- Drink plenty of water so you go to the restroom a lot
- Play pool
- Play lawn games
- Reduce screen time for you and the whole family
Who’s At Risk?
Anyone can fall into an inactive lifestyle and an inactive lifestyle can be linked to thousands of deaths each year. But people who tend to be most at risk are:
- Older people – Inactivity usually increases with age, especially in the elderly who really need to keep moving in order to reduce their risk of falls.
- Women – Women are more likely to be inactive than men.
Being active will improve your mood and your overall health. So, make sure you’re working movement into your day. The more you do it, the better you’ll feel and the easier it will become. It’s one of the most important things you can do to ensure your continued health and wellness, as well as that of your whole family. So get up and get moving!
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Long Beach, Calif.