Sitting disease, couch-potato syndrome

I read this awhile back in USA Today, and had to pass it along. Apparently, there’s a new name for couch-potato syndrome: Sitting disease.

Sounds like a joke (albeit a bad one). But the consequences of this new “disease” are anything but funny. In fact, it can be fatal.

Research shows that sitting for too long in front of the TV or at your computer may be putting you on the path to cancer. The science was presented at a conference of the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR).

Researchers reviewed more than 200 cancer studies from around the world. They found nearly 49,000 cases of breast cancer and 43,000 cases of colon cancer associated with “sitting disease.” And, they say their numbers are conservative. They think far more cancer cases are likely related to sedentary lifestyle.

Also, the more time people spent sitting, the higher their risk of dying early.

In the data, researchers found that regular physical activity reduced risk of breast, colon, and endometrial cancer by 25 to 30 percent.

We’ve known for a long time that physical activity cuts the likelihood of cancer, heart disease, and diabetes. And it doesn’t take much to offset this risk. If you find that you’ve been sitting down for an hour or so, get up and stretch your legs and walk around for a few minutes.

Make it a point to take these little breaks every hour, every day. It’s something so simple–and it could make all the difference.