Unlike its name, Sitting Disease isn’t an actual disease – it’s a term used to cover the more than 30 chronic health conditions associated with sedentary behavior, like sitting.
Statistics from the Mayo Clinic show that Americans are spending more and more time indulging these behaviors, with 50% to 70% of people spending more than 6 hours a day in a sitting position and 20% to 35% of people spending more than 4 hours a day in front of the television. The study found direct links between a sedentary lifestyle and a shortened lifespan – in fact, by reducing your TV time to less than two hours a day, you can add 1.4 years onto your lifespan!
These concerns are even more serious for sedentary elderly people, as they are more at risk than ever before of developing serious health conditions, including diabetes, physical disabilities, cognitive decline, osteoporosis, heart disease and even certain cancers.
Staying active through your senior years
While the best way to prevent Sitting Disease is to live a more active life throughout your adult years, there is still much that you can do to reduce your risks as a senior. With the help of a specialist, you can determine how much exercise you need and how vigorously you need to exercise in order to gain a good fitness level. It’s also important to remember that ‘exercise’ doesn’t only mean going for a run – there are plenty of alternative physical activities for seniors that are safe and fun, for example:
- Dance classes
- Nature walks
When it comes to fighting Sitting Disease, it’s also the little things that matter, from taking the stairs instead of waiting for the lift to choosing a walk to the shops over an hour in front of the television.
By getting into a routine of regular exercise, seniors also benefit from healthy weight loss, muscle development, and even stress reduction, all bringing a better quality of life.
Affordable and compassionate help for seniors at home
At United Methodist Communities, we strive to offer the very best quality senior care options, from assisted living to in-home senior care through our HomeWorks program. This program is about assisting seniors in the comfort of their own homes and providing them, their families and caregivers with personalized, compassionate care that prioritizes health, happiness, and independence. For more information on our at home care for seniors, contact us today.
This post originally appeared on https://umcommunities.org/blog/what-is-sitting-disease/