Study Shows Sitting For Long Periods of Time Will Make You Immobile As you Age, By Victor Omondi, Posted February 19th 2020

As schedules become tighter, for most people, sitting has become the order of the day. Of course, not just sitting and doing nothing, but pulling a seat in front of a screen and carrying out your daily tasks, or watching your favorite movie.

Well, that’s just fine, but do you ever think about the dangers of prolonged sitting? You probably would say, you take a walk in the evening, but those few hours can’t be compared to the time spent seated.

On average, people spend close to 14 hours seated, which isn’t healthy at all. According to scientists, remaining immobile for such a long time daily, increases your chances of contracting serious diseases. DiPietro, together with her teammates, has proven that sitting for many hours in a day over the years reduces mobility in older people. As such, they may not be able to get around on foot in their old age.

In a study of Sitting and walking ability published in the Journals of Gerontology, a sample of people between ages 50 and 71 were observed for a period of 8 to 10 years. The results of the

study revealed that those who spent the better part of the day sitting with minimal movements were more than three times likely to develop difficulty in walking compared to their walking counterparts. Some even ended up unable to walk at the end of the study.

Dipietro and her colleagues found out that many hours of sitting and TV watching pose serious harm to one’s health, especially if it’s coupled with minimal physical activities. While young bodies can cancel out the long hours of sitting within an hour in the gym, that’s close to impossible in late middle age, says DiPietro.

“Sitting and watching television for long hours, more so in the evening,” says DiPietro, “is one of the most dangerous things one can do in their old age.”

She says, to counter the effects of prolonged sitting, you could take a break and walk for some minutes before you resume watching. However, she notes that with the rampant online streaming of shows, it’s almost impossible to instill this in the current generation. A bigger percentage of the population spend several hours on the screen without moving. At the workplace, the story is almost the same. Many people are eliminating light activities that would break the long hours of sitting. As a result, we’ve got almost an entire generation that’s likely to develop walking complications in their old age.

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