Here in the western world we are becoming more sedentary than ever, the NHS is struggling to cope with the increase of obesity, diabetes, hypertension and many more inflammatory diseases all of which will affect how long we live, we now have a generation of children who may die before their parents, this isn’t how it is meant to be.
The problem comes from too much sitting, be it at work behind a desk or at home working or watching TV or on the computer or in children’s cases the play stations and Xboxes.
What happened to the days of kids rushing out side to play in the garden when they got home, I had a large paddling pool out in summer and couldn’t wait to get in it after school, plus a shed at bottom of garden I made in to an animal sanctuary and I would go out looking to rescue insets and little animals and would care for them, maybe should have been a vet.
I remember mum and dad being outside on summer evenings doing the garden, now we are all inside watching TV, drinking wine and eating crap, it’s no wonder we are becoming sick.
Sitting for too long not only reduces muscular and respiratory fitness but can also increase appetite and stops you wanting to go and join any activities.
Living in this sedentary way can bring on hypertension, irregular eating, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, bad circulation and fluid retention and in some cases cancer.
There have been studies to suggest that lack of activity and sitting too long weaken the immune system making you more susceptible to illnesses.
So here are some S.M.A.R.T tips on how to be more active
- Get up twenty minutes earlier and go for a walk in nature without your phone, this will set you up for the day as it will improve cardio health and bone health and get you to stimulate you senses looking at what is around you. It will also get some Vitamin D in to you if the suns out. Most people in UK have vitamin D deficiency.
- Walk to work or school if you can
- Use stairs not lifts this increases cardiovascular fitness and muscle and bone health
- Get out and about, get some friends together and go for a walk in the evening, join a sports club where you can play tennis, squash, use the gym or do yoga, getting away from developing a tech neck from looking down at your phone all the time or at the computer. Plus you have the social side of it as well which helps with cognitive health.
- Ditch the junk food when we eat rubbish we feel rubbish, you would be surprised what a difference eating well makes you feel, it will make you want to be more active and then being more active makes you want to eat well so it’s a circle of wellness being created.
- Get at least 7 hours sleep, as important for good functioning health as when you are not tired you will have more energy to do some activities.
- Drink more water, this will make you get up more at least to go to the toilet.
- Set a timer on your phone and stand up and walk around at lease every 20 minutes or run /walk up and down stairs a couple of times to activate the muscles, a lot of fitbits and sports watches have reminders on them.
All the above will help keep your mind and body a lot healthier