Combat the health risks of prolonged sitting with small actions throughout the day

An hour of moderate exercise every day may be protective against the health risks of a sedentary lifestyle—including increased risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and premature death—according to I-Min Lee, professor in the Department of Epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. But don’t think that a gym membership is the only way to meet that goal. In an article published January 30, 2017, on, Lee explained that the key is making movement a mindset.

She recommends that office workers get up from their desks and move around every half hour, and suggests setting an alarm as a reminder. Her other tips include parking farther away than necessary and taking the stairs instead of the elevator.

All of these small actions add up, and for some people they may result in more energy expenditure than an hour in the gym. “To me, the way it works best is to incorporate [movement] into your life,” Lee said. “Rather than being still, do some activity. Some is better than none, and more is better than some. If you’re moving, you can’t be sitting.”

Read article: Too much sitting can ruin your health — even if you exercise

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Prolonged sitting, TV viewing appear to shorten life (Harvard Chan School news)

Television Watching and “Sit Time” (Harvard Chan School’s Obesity Prevention Source)