This month’s Brinson Wellness Newsletter suggests that sitting for long periods at work or at home, may dramatically impact your health.

Recent findings show that sitting for several hours can cause a sharp drop in the activity level of the enzymes that break down fats, such as triglycerides. Sitting all day, the enzyme activity drops to only 50% of its original level.  As a consequence, it produces higher levels of fats in the blood that can increase the risk of cardiovascular problems and mortality.

Help your body ‘burn up’ fats and help prevent the decline in these enzymes by taking frequent breaks, walking, or engaging in other physical activity – which will help your body use triglycerides as a fuel in its metabolic processes.

Other studies have confirmed high mortality rates among those who sit the most.  A Canadian study of about 17,000 adults found that prolonged sitting, for any reason, was associated with increased health risks. This was true even among people who are physically fit and have a normal body weight, suggesting that sitting for long periods may eliminate some of the health benefits of regular exercise.

If feasible, get up and move every 10 minutes or so to effectively reduce your risks.  Stand up frequently, walk around, take the stairs instead of elevators, and even sit on a large exercise ball at your desk to help activate muscles. These activities will help keep your metabolism active and reduce your health risks at work.

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