Sitting Down For 9.5 Hours a Day Will Make You Die Faster-Study


That headline probably made you want to spring up from your seat—if you didn’t, then you probably should. Because apparently, spending more than 9.5 hours a day glued to your office chair might just send you to the grave faster than you thought.

It’s long been a belief that a sedentary lifestyle will shorten your lifespan, but now there’s proof to back it up, particularly in the case of the average desk worker/corporate slave.

According to the British Medical Journal, a study headed by Ulf Ekelund of the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences in Oslo and his colleagues found that a life of sitting down can increase the risks of early death in middle-aged and older people, while sitting less and moving more often can lower the risks. 

The team tracked over 36,000 adults aged between 40 to 62 years old living in the U.S. and Western Europe. The participants were asked to wear accelerometers, which is a device that can track the wearer’s activity while they’re awake. Each participant was tracked for an average of 5.8 years, however, around 2,000 participants died while the years-long study was taking place.

They found that "spending 9.5 hours or more each day sedentary—which essentially means sitting—was associated with a statistically significant increased risk of death, with each hour more above this threshold increasing the risk of death further,” said Professor Tom Yates from the University of Leicester in the U.K.

So unless you want to kick the bucket, don’t OT if you can help it. Time is precious, and your overtime hours stuck to your desk might just bring you closer to meeting your maker.


The researchers also found that light intensity activities, like walking or even just washing the dishes, could substantially lower any risk of death.

"These findings really reinforce the saying 'Doing something is better than doing nothing'," said Associate Professor Charlotte Edwardson from the University of Leicester.

The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends doing at least 150 minutes or moderate intensity per week for adults aged 18 to 64 years old. That could be just 20 minutes of brisk walking to and from work every day to reduce the health risks of sitting down all day.

Long story short: It’s time to unglue your ass from your seat. Eternal rest might sound great for some people, but we’re not quite ready to bite the dust.

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Anri Ichimura
Section Editor, Esquire Philippines
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