Keep Moving – Live Healthier & Longer

Keep Moving - Live Healthier & Longer | HealthSoul

Studies Suggest A Sedentary Lifestyle Is Bad For Health Even With Exercise

It does not matter if you exercise every day if you sit or lie down most of the time you are asking for problems – health problems. A recent set of studies that were published in the Annals of Internal Medicine have found that living a sedentary lifestyle was detrimental to human health, regardless if the person exercised regularly or not.

The problem is what to do with these facts. The truth is that our world is designed to keep us sitting and staying relatively still. In other words, the world wants us to use our minds more than we use our bodies. We sit while in our car, at the office, relaxing at home, spectating sporting events, at the movies, while out to eat, etc.

Exercise Recommendation

According to the Annals of Internal Medicine compilation of studies, adults should get at least 150 minutes of exercise per week. This amount of exercise has been shown to reduce the onset of major diseases like Type 2 Diabetes, Obesity, Cardiovascular Disease, and even some forms of cancer. Therefore, you should make sure that you at least shoot for this minimum recommended amount each week to help reduce your risk of the above-mentioned ailments.

Still, the recommended 150 weekly minutes of exercise may not be enough to keep you healthy as the same study also found that adults leading a high-sedentary life were mostly negating a majority of the health benefits derived from chunks of time devoted to exercise. The key is to accumulate time in 10 minute time intervals.

Sit Still & Get Sick

Some of the population research covered by the Annals of Internal Medicine Study showed that the average human being’s life revolved mostly around sitting down. During the day most people sit for nearly half the day. During this time they are usually involved in driving their car, sitting for work, watching television, or surfing the net. The problem is not necessarily in the sitting itself, for everyone needs to sit down sometime, just the amount of sitting being done, which according to the study, is extremely detrimental to health.

Health Outcomes Of Sedentary Lifestyle

Out of the over 20,000 studies documented by the Annals of Internal Medicine, the resulting numbers showed a clear indication that the more you sit, the sicker you will get. The data from the compiled studies also revealed that illnesses and diseases like higher mortality rates, cancers, cardiovascular disease, and type 2 diabetes were more common in those who led a sedentary lifestyle (lots of sitting and lying down), no matter if they exercised or not. This is an extremely important find as it enlightens us as to the importance of staying active throughout the day and not just for the 20-30 minutes when we are at the gym sweating it out.

What You Can Do To Stay Active All Day Long

You do not need a gym to keep your body busy. There are an infinite amount of ways in which to keep your body moving and thus add more healthy years to your life.

Below, is a shortlist of suggested ways to keep your body in motion within your average day.

  • Walk during your lunch break. Right after you are done eating, take a 10 to 15-minute stroll in a nearby park or down the street.
  • Take a few minutes each hour to stand while working on your computer. Stretch, go get a drink, or go to the bathroom. Instead of emailing someone in the cubicle next to you, walk over and work with them.
  • Walk to work. If you are too far from work then bike.
  • Take the stairs. No escalators or elevators. Keep moving, even if your office is on the 20th floor!
  • Park far away. Do not go for the nearest parking space. The extra walking will do you good.
  • Daily household chores. Why hire someone to do it for you or wait for the spouse or kids to complete home tasks? Household chores are a great way to keep the body going and avoid the sedentary trap. Try to have a mind-frame that chores are part of moving to stay healthy and not a burdensome task.


  • Aviroop Biswas, BSc; Paul I. Oh, MD, MSc; Guy E. Faulkner, PhD; Ravi R. Bajaj, MD; Michael A. Silver, BSc;
  • Marc S. Mitchell, MSc; and David A. Alter, MD, PhD. Sedentary Time and Its Association With Risk for Disease Incidence, Mortality, and Hospitalization in Adults. Annuals of Internal Medicine