Dr. Dunlop was the lead author of a study that examined the health outcome of seniors who were sixty years old or older and who spent most of their time sitting. 2,286 adults aged 60 years and older who took part in the NHANES (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey) wore a device that measures physical activity (accelerometer). They wore this for at least 4 days and were examined by a physician.
It was noted that some individuals had developed disabilities in performing activities of daily life (ADL). ADL consist of getting in and out of bed, eating and bathing. The study found that there were 3.6% who had developed ADL disability and most of the study participants spent almost 9 hours per day being sedentary. The odds of developing ADL disability were 46% greater for each daily hour spend in sedentary behavior. Sedentary behavior is an independent risk factor for developing ADL disabilities and this is the first study to prove this.
Dr. Dunlop has some advice how to remedy this situation: get up when the phone rings and talk standing; park some distance away from the grocery store which forces you to walk some distance back and forth from your car. Another method is not simply grabbing some water, when you are thirsty. Instead of that get up and walk around the house first, then come back and reward yourself with a drink of water. It is all about integrating little changes into your daily activities that make you be less sessile.You heard this statement many times before: “take the stairs instead of an elevator whenever possible”. These will prevent ADL disability.
More information is available at Fitness, which will counteract the effects from prolonged sitting.
Reference: J Phys Act Health. 2014 Feb.5