Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Medicine Science Technology

Moving Every Half Hour Could Help Limit Effects of Sedentary Lifestyle, Says Study (theguardian.com) 98

An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Guardian: Moving your body at least every half an hour could help to limit the harmful effects of desk jobs and other sedentary lifestyles, research has revealed. The study found that both greater overall time spent inactive in a day, and longer periods of inactivity were linked to an increased risk of death. Writing in the journal the Annals of Internal Medicine, Diaz and colleagues from seven U.S. institutions describe how they kitted out nearly 8,000 individuals aged 45 or over from across the U.S. with activity trackers between 2009 and 2013. Each participant wore the fitness tracker for at least four days during a period of one week, with deaths of participants tracked until September 2015. The results reveal that, on average, participants were inactive for 12.3 hours of a 16 hour waking day, with each period of inactivity lasting an average of 11.4 minutes. After taking into account a host of factors including age, sex, education, smoking and high blood pressure, the team found that both the overall length of daily inactivity and the length of each bout of sedentary behavior were linked to changes in the risk of death from any cause. The associations held even among participants undertaking moderate to vigorous physical activity.

Those who were inactive for 13.2 hours a day had a risk of death 2.6 times that of those spending less than 11.5 hours a day inactive, while those whose bouts of inactivity lasted on average 12.4 minutes or more had a risk of death almost twice that of those who were inactive for an average of less than 7.7 minutes at a time. The team then looked at the interaction between the two measures of inactivity, finding the risk of death was greater for those who had both high overall levels of inactivity (12.5 hours a day or more) and long average bouts of sedentary behavior (10 minutes or more), than for those who had high levels of just one of the measures.

This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Moving Every Half Hour Could Help Limit Effects of Sedentary Lifestyle, Says Study

Comments Filter:
  • by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) on Monday September 11, 2017 @10:38PM (#55178781) Journal

    I keep the dark chocolate covered prunes, cigarettes, and 15 year-old scotch on the other side of the house, so I have to get up once every half-hour.

    By the way, if you've never tried dark chocolate covered prunes, you don't know what you're missing.

    https://youtu.be/vuo8kD5zF5I [youtu.be]

    • By the way, if you've never tried dark chocolate covered prunes, you don't know what you're missing.

      Hmm, let me guess: dark chocolate gives you palpitations and sleeplessness, whereas prunes give you diarrhea. Am I on the right track?

    • by Quirkz ( 1206400 )

      But how are the dark-chocolate-covered cigarettes? Seems like a waste of chocolate. As for the 15-year-old Scotch, I imagine it pairing well with the chocolate, but for a liqueur I'd use a younger batch.

  • by alvinrod ( 889928 ) on Monday September 11, 2017 @10:46PM (#55178799)
    Being twice as likely to die doesn't provide a lot of meaningful information, especially when the raw percentage chance is low. Based on information linked in the study, only about 4% of the study population died over the time period of the study. The only information is that the study was of adults at least 45 years of age so although that may seem high, I'd really want to know what the age distribution is as that could be within expectations for their participants.

    Regardless of that, it suggests that even if you are less active (and therefore twice as likely to die) your odds of death still aren't very high in an absolute sense.
    • by morcego ( 260031 ) on Monday September 11, 2017 @11:28PM (#55178905)

      That would be an average of aprox. 1% on the low sedentary time/low sedentary bolt end, and about 5% on the high sedentary time/low sedentary bolt end. (Legend: Adjusted cumulative mortality according to joint associations of total sedentary time and prolonged, uninterrupted sedentary bouts).

      There paper is much more complete, and is available at DOI: 10.7326/M17-0212 (http://annals.org/aim/article/2653704/patterns-sedentary-behavior-mortality-u-s-middle-a).

      Regardless, the paper is absolutely worth reading.

    • by lucm ( 889690 )

      Regardless of that, it suggests that even if you are less active (and therefore twice as likely to die) your odds of death still aren't very high in an absolute sense.

      Interestingly, humans on average today are more active physically than wild animals. For instance, geese that embark on a 1500+ miles trip every year only fly for a few minutes every day in the months before. They move less than us but they are more fit, and they don't take multivitamins and kale smoothies.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        This. Even the study pointed it out.

        Actual moving around can easily be constrained to once an hour.
        Jump or jog on the spot for 5 minutes every hour. Done.
        This is enough to cycle your gut, vibrate your blood vessels and major organs, cycle cerebrospinal fluid and just generally get your heart-rate up. Of course, you can keep your heart-rate up at a desk if you consciously tweak your muscles regularly, or do simple exhaustive mental exercises while waiting, if you don't have time for either, your heart-rat

      • by Quirkz ( 1206400 )

        Geese may not fly more than 5 minutes a day, but they're certainly still active, either walking or swimming in search of food for good bits of the day. Which I guess correlates well to, "You don't have to go jogging for hours, just get up and move around a bit."

    • I kinda read parts of the summery but it doesn't seem like once every 30 minutes isn't enough at all?

      More like once every ~5? ..

      And for how long? Is it enough to fetch a cup of tea in the room beside or ..

      • It indeed seems like a lot left to the imagination. 12 minutes is a "long" period of inactivity and 7 is "short"? There is a lot of implied precision here which I wonder if the stats fully bear out to a meaningful level of confidence.

        I thought I was doing well with the Pomodoro method (in my implementation, 25 minutes of work, 5 minutes of getting up and walking around) but apparently I should be doing 7 minute work intervals?

        Perhaps the research is good, I haven't tried to review it in enough detail, but t

        • It indeed seems like a lot left to the imagination. 12 minutes is a "long" period of inactivity and 7 is "short"? There is a lot of implied precision here which I wonder if the stats fully bear out to a meaningful level of confidence.

          I thought I was doing well with the Pomodoro method (in my implementation, 25 minutes of work, 5 minutes of getting up and walking around) but apparently I should be doing 7 minute work intervals?

          Ironically, smokers may be getting some benefit after all :-) ... I leave me desk and walk down three flights to smoke for 5 minutes (vaping these days, though), then walk back up 3 flights. This happens roughly once every hour.

          • by gnick ( 1211984 )

            I leave me desk and walk down three flights to smoke for 5 minutes...

            If it weren't for cigarettes, what excuse would I have to go get fresh air?

            • by aliquis ( 678370 )

              If it weren't for cigarettes, what excuse would I have to go get fresh air?

              My higher pulse of looking at girls make me work better and a happier employee?

    • by zifn4b ( 1040588 )

      Being twice as likely to die doesn't provide a lot of meaningful information

      Oh being twice as likely to die sooner isn't the worst of it all. You will be in a world of chronic pain towards the end of it in the form of arthritis and tight, shortened muscles. This will prevent you from sleeping. That's not even counting the issues from internal organs that will be exacerbated. I'd rather be active to have a lot less pain. It's not about living longer necessarily. I'm hoping when I go it will be sudden so I'm not aware of it rather than being in chronic pain and agony.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    You're all thinking it...

  • If you can move around for about 30 minutes, every half hour or so, you'll be much less likely to die

    • by lucm ( 889690 )

      If you can move around for about 30 minutes, every half hour or so, you'll be much less likely to die

      And as a bonus, the motion-activated lights always stay on, so you are no longer interrupted by disrupting periods of darkness.

    • It works the other way round too: if you don't die, you're more likely to move around. Win win!

  • no matter how much exercise each one did.

  • 13.2 - 8 hours sleep - 3 hours (breackfast, lunch, dinner) - 1 hour (bathroom) = 1.2 hours of inactive remaining

    and that hasn't even count the 1 hour meetings or other inactive stuff people do in their 9to5 schedule.

    • by myid ( 3783581 )

      I think the number 13.2 is reasonable. For one thing, sleep time isn't counted as part of the time for inactivity. The article [theguardian.com] says,

      ... participants were inactive for 12.3 hours of a 16 hour waking day ...

      (The article says "12.3" for the average number of inactive hours, and then compares the health results of "13.2" to 11.5.)

      Also I don't think most people sit down for an hour for each meal.

      • by Quirkz ( 1206400 )

        Also I don't think most people sit down for an hour for each meal.

        With my kids, I'm lucky if I can make it 5 minutes without needing to get up and do something in the middle of the meal.

  • by mark-t ( 151149 ) <markt@nerdFORTRANflat.com minus language> on Tuesday September 12, 2017 @12:32AM (#55179035) Journal

    Not being sedentary can limit the effects of being sedentary.

    (sigh)

    I am reminded of the Tautology club, where the first rule of the tautology club was the first rule of the tautology club.

    • I am reminded of the Tautology club, where the first rule of the tautology club was the first rule of the tautology club.

      Not quite. A sedentary life style isn't defined as having to sit perfectly still. You can still be sedentary while doing a small amount of movement every half an hour. The key here is that little bit helps.

      • by mark-t ( 151149 )
        Rephrasing the headline, it says simply that movement reduces the effects of a lack of movement. While that might not quite be a tautology, it might be about the nest closest thing to one.
  • by antdude ( 79039 ) on Tuesday September 12, 2017 @01:06AM (#55179107) Homepage Journal

    I used to be able to sit for hours, but not anymore after getting older. I noticed my body no longer wants to idle. It want to move around a lot. Also, my health had been degrading so I need to exercise too.

  • ....at less less than 12 minute intervals.  It takes me 5 minutes just to get back "into" my job after getting up for another coffee.  I routinely sit for 55 minutes at a stretch, anything less, and my productivity suffers dramatically.
    • Get a standing desk, so you can focus on your work while allowing your body parts to move around. I've had one for a few years and it was a kind of revelation -- I love computers, but I hate sitting still. While standing, people don't generally stay in a fixed position for very long, so a standing desk forces you to do all kinds of natural movements.
    • It takes me 5 minutes just to get back "into" my job after getting up for another coffee.

      That may be specific to your style. I often think best when moving so when solving some complex problem I go and get coffee, or go to the bathroom and think about it while on the way.

      The trick is not getting distracted by conversation.

  • Can I sue my workplaces for being unhealthy? This is just as bad as asbestos or black lung!

  • How do they know that people that sit more are just not as healthy in the first place? What proof is there that a person that sits a lot would live longer if he got up every 30 minutes? My dad is 85 and healthy and and has always spent a lot of time sitting and reading and resting.
  • Being born has the biggest risk of death
  • Hopefully we won't ban sitting in bars anytime soon.
  • I'm curious why the key number in headline is half an hour, since TFS mentions "10 minutes", "12 minutes", numbers like that.

    Does the headline writer think we have 20 minute hours?

    Did TFS writer manage to misquote TFA?

    Or did whatever standards body controls this sort of thing redefine the hour when I wasn't looking? It would certainly be nice if our 8 hour workday was redefined down to 160 minutes or so. And think of the paychecks if we work the usual amount of time and get paid for 24 (20 minute) hou

  • by wjcofkc ( 964165 ) on Tuesday September 12, 2017 @07:09AM (#55179875)
    I am self-employed and work from home. I started working at around 4:00am work and work until 7:00pm. For the longest time I had myself deskbound most of the day. It started to catch up with me in the form of aches, pains, and fatigue. I am not getting any younger and knew I was setting myself up for trouble. Solution? I pick up my bass several times a day and play the most demanding bass lines until I sweat. The playing bass not only helps me physically, but clears up my thought process. This has increased my productivity and overall well being. Also, I am considering a standing desk, as long as it is convertible.
    • by wjcofkc ( 964165 )
      I hate to reply to myself, but I also take Slashdot breaks. Not physical activity, but switching mental gears has also proven to be a great help.
    • Moving around or not, 15-hour work days will take a toll. Unless you already take 7 hours worth of breaks, of course.

  • I've been using a standing desk for about 18 months and it's really good to break up sitting sessions.

    I stand for about 12 hours a day, but it's not just standing in place. Standing naturally gives you a reason to be active. You can easily stretch your legs and move around. Sometimes after completing a programming task or similar, I'll just shadow box for 30 seconds because "why not".

    If anyone is curious, here's how I built my standing desk for about $50 https://nickjanetakis.com/blog... [nickjanetakis.com].

  • When I play a matchmaking game like Mech Warrior Online I do push ups or sit ups between each match for like 2 minutes and it actually does help. It reduced my back problems, helped my energy level, etc.
  • This is the first good news since a few years back a study showed nominally in-shape people (e.g. jogging wise) suffered as much heart disease as couch potatoes if they just sat around at work and home when done exercising.

    Now you have to have a standing, if not treadmill desk.

    So...very very good news.

  • The real guidelines can be found here [health.gov]. The core (for adults):

    • All adults should avoid inactivity. Some physical activity is better than none, and adults who participate in any amount of physical activity gain some health benefits.
    • For substantial health benefits, adults should do at least 150 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes) a week of moderate-intensity, or 75 minutes (1 hour and 15 minutes) a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity, or an equivalent combination of moderate- and vigorous-intens

To be a kind of moral Unix, he touched the hem of Nature's shift. -- Shelley

Working...