Researchers May Have Come Up with the Prescription for Prolonged Sitting

Portrait of black senior woman smiling at camera while enjoying cup of coffee at home, copy spaceThere is an ever-growing amount of research showing that prolonged sitting is bad for your health.

Extended sitting has become a staple of modern-day life. It’s an essential job requirement for many, while it’s also paramount to travel time, leisure time, and even socializing. What’s even scarier is that its hazardous effects even impact people who exercise regularly.


Clearly, everybody should sit less and move more. But how often should you get up from your chair, and for how long? Basically, what is the least amount of activity needed to counteract the impact of a day filled with sitting?

A study from Columbia University may have come up with the answer: just five minutes of walking every half hour during prolonged sitting can offset some of its most harmful effects.

Researchers looked at a variety of different intervals to decide which was best. All of the study participants sat in an ergonomic chair for 8 hours and had their activity and movement strictly monitored.
Walking for five minutes every 30 minutes was the only exercise interval that showed significant improvements in blood sugar and blood pressure. It also had a sizeable impact on how participants responded to meals and overall energy and mood.

All amounts of walking were found to drop blood pressure by 4 or 5 mmHg compared to sitting all day, while all the intervals – except for walking for one minute every hour – led to improved energy levels and mood.


The big difference came in blood sugar levels. People who walked for five minutes every half hour saw a 58% reduction in blood sugar levels compared to those who sat all day.

Moving for just five minutes every half hour may play a role in keeping blood sugar levels in check and helping to prevent type-2 diabetes.

If you do a lot of sitting, budget five minutes out of every 30 for a little movement. It could go a long way in protecting your health.

Author Bio

About eight years ago, Mat Lecompte had an epiphany. He’d been ignoring his health and suddenly realized he needed to do something about it. Since then, through hard work, determination and plenty of education, he has transformed his life. He’s changed his body composition by learning the ins and outs of nutrition, exercise, and fitness and wants to share his knowledge with you. Starting as a journalist over 10 years ago, Mat has not only honed his belief system and approach with practical experience, but he has also worked closely with nutritionists, dieticians, athletes, and fitness professionals. He embraces natural healing methods and believes that diet, exercise and willpower are the foundation of a healthy, happy, and drug-free existence.


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