21 February 2013
People who spend much of their day sitting down have increased risks of chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure, a study has found.
Research at Kansas State University in the US found people sitting for more than four hours a day – such as office workers and lorry drivers – were "significantly more likely" to have one of these four diseases.
The study involved more than 60,000 Australian men aged between 45 and 65 who were asked how long they sat down each day as well as whether they had various chronic diseases.
Each participant was put into a group according to their daily sitting time: less than four hours, four to six hours, six to eight hours, and more than eight hours.
The study showed that those sitting for at least six hours a day were more likely to report having diabetes.
Kansas State University researcher Richard Rosenkranz said there was a "chair-step" in increase in the risk of chronic diseases the more time participants spent sitting down
"The group sitting more than eight hours clearly had the highest risk," he said.
Mr Rosenkranz said people should get more physical activity and sit less.
"It's not just that people aren't getting enough physical activity, but it's that they're also sitting too much," he said. "And on top of that, the more you sit, the less time you have for physical activity."
The study was published in the International Journal of Behavioural Nutrition and Physical Activity.
Posted by Philip Briggs
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