New Study: Too Much Sitting May Lead to Dementia
When we think about the health risks of prolonged sitting, we typically first think of the physical aches and pains. However, more and more research is coming out showing that the effects of sitting go much deeper and may even cause premature death.
One such preliminary study from the University of California, Los Angeles, shows that sitting for too long over a lifetime can lead to atrophy of the part of the brain responsible for memory. Researchers say this atrophy could lead to dementia or even alzheimer’s in those who lead a sedentary lifestyle.
To conduct the research, 35 people between the ages of 45 and 75 who did not have existing dementia were surveyed about their lifestyle, Including the amount of physical activity they did and the average hours per day they spend sitting each week. MRIs were also conducted of the medial temporal lobe, the region of the brain involved in the formation of new memories.
The results showed that participants who reported high amounts of sitting with low activity level had less thickness in their medial temporal lobe. A thinner MTL can be an early sign of cognitive decline and dementia. The researchers suggest more longitudinal studies be conducted to “better understanding the effects of sedentary behavior on our brains is important given the global epidemic of physical inactivity and sedentary lifestyles.”
If these results are confirmed in future research, physical activity and reducing sitting time may become and important intervention for older adults at risk for dementia or alzheimer’s. The researchers said “The finding … is clinically relevant and suggests that reducing this behavior may be a possible target for interventions designed to improve brain health in middle-aged and older adults.”
It’s clear that the time to change lifestyle habits is now. The risks associated with sitting all day are too numerous and severe. The best way to combat the health issues tied to sitting, is to stay in motion throughout your day. If that’s not possible because of your job, then sitting in motion with swopper chair is an excellent option.
When you sit on a swopper, you are able to bounce, tilt and sway while you work. This keeps your body is motion and eliminates the risks associated with sitting still all day, which now appear to include dementia. Take charge of your health and start sitting in motion.