8 Reasons Why Sitting Too Much Is Bad For Your Health
Most of spend atleast 6 hours a day if not more sitting throughout our day to day activities. It can be because of work that requires you to sit in front of the computer or in front of the wheel or other similar jobs. Even sitting on the couch watching television counts.
This blog discusses about some of the risks and affects that prolonged sitting causes to your body!
1. Stiff Shoulders and Neck
Sitting continuously for several hours can cause some great damage to posture. This also leads to pain and stiffness in your neck and shoulders. It will be worst if you are hunched over the computer screen.
This will stiffen your muscles, back, butt, neck and shoulders. This can be avoided if you take breaks in between and be more concerned about your physcial health then the computer screen.
2. Diabetes Risk
Prolonged sitting dramatically increases your risk of developing diabetes. Several studies have been done to find out the effects and increased insulin resistance is one of them. Even lying in bed for a week has shown similar results. Your body changes the way it works and reacts differently to insulin when sitting.
Spending too much time sitting in front television, computer, or behind the wheel increases the risk of diabetes.
3. Heart Disease
Sadly, prolonged sitting can potentially hurt your heart health and may cause cardiovascular disease. According to study people who sit more have higher chaces of suffering from a stroke or heart attack. Spending too much hours in front of the screen can also spike the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Even if your diet and lifestyle is healthy the risk of getting heart disease is still high if you sit for prolonged hours.
4. Anxiety and Depression
Prolonged sitting not only has physical effects but also mental ones. Although mental effects of sitting aare understood and talked less. The exact relationship between mental health and sitting down is not known. It is believed that the lack of physical activity eliminates the beneits that regular exercises offers to the body, this may lead to some mental effects.
Moreover, spending too much time on screen-based tasks regularly may disrupt sleep. Thus increasing the anxiety. Too much time by yourself distances you from friends and family which often causes social anxiety. The exact reason why pprolonged sitting increases anxiety is unclear but the above mentioned factors are believed to be responsible in a way or two.
5. Tight Hips and a Bad Back
Sitting for several hours is not good as it will negatively affect your leg, glute muscles, hips, and back. Sitting causes huge stress on your spine, neck, and back muscles. Sitting causes your hip flexor muscles to shorten, resulting in problems with hip joints. It only gets worse if you’ve got a bad posture. One must use a comfy ergonomic chair. Although it doesn’t mean that you can sit for hours without any negative effects. Stand up and move around for a minute or two every hour to keep your spine in line.
If you sit for more than 4 hours the risk of premature degeneration, and compression on the discs in your spine increases. This can also result in chronic pain.
Also Read: Physiotherapy Exercises
6. Weight Gain
Digestion is inefficient if you spend a lot of time sitting and not moving. Moving your muscles helps the body to digest fats and sugars obtained from food. Moving causes your body to release certain muscles such as lipoprotein lipase that are responsible for processing the fat and sugar you consume.
You’ll get more weight if you spend more time sitting, especially the belly fat, which can be very bad. Prolonged sitting is still dangerous even if you exercise. Too much screen time will still affect you, but in a less severe manner if you perform moderate activities for at least 1 hour a day.
7. Weak Legs and Glutes
If you don’t use them, you lose them, as simple as that. BY sitting you not only are depending on yourself on your lower body but also making it weak. Not using your muscles makes them weak and prone to frequent injuries, even chronic ones.
Sitting too much leads to muscle atrophy, which weakens your muscles, and it is tough to avoid injury without strong legs and glutes muscles. Even old adults can develop osteoporosis if they are inactive. This can also mean that you might lose the ability to carry out everyday tasks such as taking a bath or using the toilet.
One doesn’t need to engage in rigorous physical activity to avoid weak muscles. Just be active like a normal person and don’t plant yourself onto the chair like a plant.
Sitting in fornt of your computer or television for hours is surely a bad thing for your physcial health but is worse for the mental health. This increases your chances of developing dementia. Sitting also puts you at risk of heart disease, diabtese, high blood pressure, and stroke which can further play a role in contributing to dementia.
Moving throughout the day, performing exercises can lower the risk.
Author - Denish Tamakuwala
Denish Tamakuwala is a Physiotherapist and Clinic Director at Innova Physio. He is a Registered Physiotherapist with a Bachelor's degree in Physical Therapy from the Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Science. He obtained a Diploma degree (honours) in Fitness & Health Promotion from Humber College. He possesses extensive knowledge and practical experience in therapy and rehabilitation treatment. Apart from assisting his patients through physiotherapy, he loves to compose informational articles to educate the mass.