Negative Health Effects of Prolonged Sitting

3rd November 2016

NEGATIVE HEALTH EFFECTS OF PROLONGED SITTING – A reminder for the holiday season (By: Rhys Dale - Chiropractor & Director of Cleveland Chiropractic)

Prolonged sitting has been shown time and time again to be detrimental to our health. So, with the holiday season just around the corner, let’s have a chat about the negative health effects of prolonged sitting.

The human body is designed specifically for constant movement.  We have over 360 joints and around 700 skeletal muscles throughout the body. These structures function to keep our frame as mobile and fluid as possible.  The veins returning blood to our heart require movement to pump effectively. Most importantly, our nervous system requires motor activation in order to maintain the health of the brain.

When we sit for periods longer than an hour we decrease the air through the lungs and the blood pumping to our skeletal muscles. Brain function dips due to the decrease in oxygenation and the limbs feel dull and heavy. Posture rounds, causing wear and tear through the small muscles, joints and discs that support your weight and over time we will feel aches through the spinal column.

Long periods of inactivity and sitting (4hrs or more) have also been linked to heart disease, cancers, kidney failure and type-2 diabetes. Studies have reported up to a 50% increased risk of death from any cause due to inactivity with 9% of premature mortality directly linked to inactivity.

The good news is this is easily remedied. Get up, get out, and get walking. You don’t have to be a triathlete to avoid these negative health effects, just set aside 5 mins of every hour to hop out of your chair and get the body moving.  

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