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Avoid the 'sitting disease' at work

FoxNews.com—February 23, 2014

If you are like most working Americans, you sit all day at work. Add in the time you spend sitting on your commute, as well as any leisure time at home, and you can easily waste over 13 hours a day sitting down.

A recent study by Australia's Sax Institute found that people who reported sitting for at least 11 hours a day had a 40 percent higher risk of dying within the next three years than people who sat for four hours a day.

Previous studies also suggest that a sedentary lifestyle can be linked to heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers. The condition of prolonged sitting and its effects on the human body, physiologically and metabolically, has become known as the “sitting disease.”

“'Sitting disease’ is a description of a sedentary lifestyle that became a coined phrase as the medical community began to associate an increase in cardiovascular health with inactivity, particularly sitting,” Dr. Alice Chen, a physiatrist at Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City, told FoxNews.com. “Beyond the cardiovascular implications, the sedentary lifestyle predisposes patients to neck and back pain due to atrophy or underdevelopment of the core abdominal and gluteal muscles,” Chen said.

To counteract this habitual sitting, doctors suggest taking steps to become more physically active– even at work. “I encourage my patients to get out of their chairs once an hour. Get up to ask a question to a colleague. Get up to go to the water cooler and take the stairs when it’s reasonable,” Chen said.

This story originally appeared at foxnews.com.


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