In a new study, researchers found that physical activity may help reduce the death risk caused by too much sitting time.
The finding shows that physical activity is an important part of a healthy lifestyle and may help people live longer.
The research was conducted by a team from the University of Sydney in Australia.
Previous research has shown that sitting too much could bring many health risks.
However, the link between sedentary behavior, mortality and heart disease are not always well understood.
In the study, the team aimed to solve the problem.
They examined 149,077 Australian men and women aged 45 years and older.
These people completed a questionnaire to report how many hours every day they spent sitting, standing and sleeping.
They also reported total time spent walking or taking part in moderate or vigorous physical activity.
The team followed these people for about nine years to check their all-cause mortality and about seven years to check their heart disease mortality.
They found that for less active adults, the amount of time spent sitting was linked to an increased risk of death.
People who had higher sitting times (more than six hours) had higher all-cause and heart disease mortality risks.
However, the link was mainly found in people who did not meet physical activity recommendations.
This suggests that increasing physical activity to recommended levels might help reduce this association.
The results also showed that in the absence of physical activity, merely cutting sitting times may be insufficient for better health.
For example, replacing sitting with standing was linked to risk reduction in low sitters, but replacing sitting with physical activity was more linked to risk reduction in high sitters.
The finding suggests the importance of promoting physical activity in public.
The researchers suggest that it is better to substitute sitting for brisk walking than for just standing up.
The research also found that replacing sitting with sleeping was not linked to changes in mortality risk in people who slept seven hours a day or less.
But it was linked to a higher death risk in people who slept for more than seven hours.
The lead author of the study is Emmanuel Stamatakis, Ph.D., professor of physical activity, lifestyle and population health.
The study is published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
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