Sitting Makes Your Heart Fatter

Researchers have identified a health risk that exercise won’t fix.


HealthDay News reports on a study discussed at the annual meeting of the American Heart Association this week, where researchers discovered another reason sitting for hours is bad for you…

CT scans of more than 500 older Americans found that excess time spent sitting “was significantly related to pericardial fat around your heart,” said study lead author Britta Larsen, a postdoctoral researcher in the department of cardiovascular epidemiology at the University of California, San Diego.

There have been numerous large studies recently suggesting that when it comes to its deleterious health effects, sitting is not just the absence of physical activity — it has effects on the body that go beyond lack of exercise.

According to Larsen, that means that “even if you run every day but then you sit for eight hours a day, the sitting is still doing something bad for your health.” She also noted that studies have found sitting to be detrimental to health even after scientists factored out excess weight gain.

“So, we wanted to see if sitting was related to the distribution of fat, because different types of fat are worse than others,” Larsen said.

Researchers suggest going for a short walk every couple hours, or using a standing desk, could help reduce the risk.

Stacy Johnson

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