Sitting: Is it really the new smoking?

We all know that sitting is the new smoking — it raises the risk of disability, diabetes, heart disease and cancer, not to mention obesity

We all know that sitting is the new smoking — it raises the risk of disability, diabetes, heart disease and cancer, not to mention obesity

At school, in the car, at the office or at home relaxing. There’s no doubt that all of us spend a lot of time sitting.

Did you know that most Americans spend an average of 9 hours a day sitting in a chair? Most of us don’t even spend that much time sleeping (although we probably wish we could).

Scientists believe that people who sit more than six hours a day are at greater risk of developing serious health issues.

We all know that smoking is bad for our health (not to mention the teeth and gums), but studies show that a sedentary lifestyle can affect the body in many of the same ways that smoking cigarettes does.

Prolonged sitting causes many short-term and long-term effects, as well as many health-related issues.

High blood pressure and/or glucose levels, weight gain, high cholesterol, and increased risk of heart disease, diabetes as well as colon, breast, prostate and lung cancer are just a few of the reasons people need to get up and move.

If you’re stuck at a desk all day, there are many ways you can incorporate movement into your workday:

>> Take the stairs
>> Sit on an exercise ball
>> Walk to a co-worker’s desk to talk in person rather than sending emails
>> Drink lots of water (you’ll have to get up to go to the bathroom more frequently)
>> Walk to a farther bathroom
>> Workout on your lunch break
>> Stand up and stretch periodically

From walking and stretching to basic exercises, it's time to get smart about getting up and moving.

From walking and stretching to basic exercises, it’s time to get smart about getting up and moving.

An App a day can help keep the doctor away.

Check out these simple apps and get ready to move your way to a healthier and happier you:

Break Reminder (free for Android): A simple app that reminds you to take a short break. You set how long you’d like to work and the length of your break. The app displays a countdown till your break and will notify you when it’s time to get up.

Stand Up (free for Apple): Set a reminder interval (from 5 minutes to 2 hours) and an alarm will sound when it’s time to stand up. Customize the app to your work schedule so you set it once and forget it.

Move a Bit (free for Android): This app focuses on reminding you to take a few steps throughout the day.

Move (free for Apple, with in-app purchases): This app reminds you to stand up and do an exercise at regular intervals that you choose. There are more than 300 exercises and you can choose to turn specific exercises on and off.

About Dr. Hylan

Dr. Brad Hylan thumbnail image

Dr. Brad Hylan — We cater to cowards!

Dr. Brad Hylan has a remarkable zest for life, and is the first to admit that he loves a good adventure and is always willing to try new things. As a dentist, his mission is to make a difference in his patient’s lives, their overall health and of course… their smiles!