Sedentary routine could be as killing as diabetes, junk food

February 24th, 2009 - 5:54 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, Feb 24 (IANS) Sedentary routine is about to join smoking and junk food on the list of vices that heighten your risk of diabetes and heart disease, besides obesity.
New research by universities of Queensland and Melbourne shows that half-an-hour in the gym will not make up for the waist-expanding damage caused by spending the rest of the day sitting.

But the good news is that pottering about the house or gently walking around the office while on the phone might be enough to keep you fit.

The study joins the growing body of evidence suggesting too much sitting might undo the benefits of exercise.

The study measured the intensity of physical activity in 168 subjects over seven days. It found that, regardless of how much moderate-to-vigorous exercise they did or their total sedentary time, those who took more breaks from sitting had lower waist circumferences, lower body mass indexes and lower levels of triglycerides and glucose in blood.

Higher levels of triglycerides, or blood lipids, have been linked to a heightened risk of heart disease and stroke. High blood glucose levels are linked to the development of diabetes, which itself is a major risk factor for heart disease.

“What this shows is there are benefits in just getting up regularly and interrupting your sedentary time,” principal researcher Genevieve Healy of the University of Queensland said.

The project is a collaboration between the Baker Heart Research Institute and the International Diabetes Institute, which will merge this year, and the universities of Melbourne and Queensland, said a Melbourne release.

These findings will appear in the April issue of Diabetes Care.

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