The Zoomer Report: Risks of Sitting All Day

Do you sit in your office all day? If so, here’s why you should get up and walk around frequently.


A study out of Australia finds that people who sit for extended periods of time without getting up are at higher risk for heart disease than those who take regular breaks to walk around.

The researchers found that people who sat for prolonged periods had larger waists, higher blood pressure, higher levels of bad cholesterol, and less “good” cholesterol.

What’s more, the negative impact of such lengthy bouts of inactivity seems to apply even if you go to the gym regularly. In other words, even if you exercise for 30 to 60 minutes a day, what you do for the rest of the day can affect your health. This research suggests that even small changes to your activity levels like standing up regularly or walking down the hall might help to lower cardiovascular risk.

At the extremes, the most sedentary study participants sat a little more than 21 hours a day, while the least sedentary sat just under two hours per day.

Walking breaks can be easily incorporated into your routine. As a matter of fact, I find it’s quicker to get things done if you walk over to a colleague’s desk instead of emailing.

Photo © Krzysztof Kwiatkowski

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Libby ZnaimerAbout The Zoomer Report

Libby Znaimer, a prominent Canadian journalist specializing in business, politics, and lifestyle issues, is producer and host of The Zoomer Report, a special feature on topics of interest to baby boomers and the 50+. It covers everything from health and wealth to leisure and volunteerism, from the special vantage point of the generation that has changed society in its wake. Ms. Znaimer is also Vice-President of News and Information for Classical 96.3FM and AM740. Her first book, “In Cancerland – Living Well Is The Best Revenge” – was published in October 2007 by Key Porter.

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