As we welcome Alexis into our homes to turn on the lights and robovac to vacuum our floors, the need to move and and be physical lessens. I am not here to debate the merits of these devices. The issue does cause us to pause and really evaluate the amount of sitting that we are doing in a day. If you don’t have a Fitbit or some other tracking device, download a free app and see for yourself how much you are really moving and how often. Unfortunately, exercising can’t negate long periods of sitting. Sitting is an independent risk factor for many ailments, including heart disease, joint pain, obesity, cancer and more.
Exercise as we all know has so many health benefits. However, movement may be what actually saves our lives. Have you heard that sitting is the new smoking? In fact it was James Levine who brought this to the forefront in the last few years. He states “The chair is out to kill us.” In a recent interview with the LA Times, he stated “Sitting is more dangerous than smoking, kills more people than HIV and is more treacherous than parachuting. We are sitting ourselves to death.” These are bold statements, though research does back them up.
Is it all doom and gloom? No, and there is much that we can do to add movement into our day and it will take conscious effort. In general, you don’t want to be sitting more 30-60 minutes at a time.
Here a few suggestions to add more movement into your day:
I challenge you this week to focus on one area of your life where you know you need to move more, and to do it. Don’t let holiday travel or spending more time with your family detour you. Involve others with your efforts to add movement and everyone will benefit.
Devorah Werner, Health Coach
RD, MSW, PA-C
PS: Next week, we will bring all the simple habits together. See you then.