In a new study, researchers found just two weeks of sedentary behaviors could cause dangerous harms to people’s health.
They found after just two weeks of sedentary behavior, formerly fit people had a decline in heart and lung health, bigger waist circumference, more body fat and liver fat, and higher of insulin resistance.
This means they have higher risks of heart and lung diseases, obesity and diabetes.
The research was conducted by a team from Newcastle University and the University of Liverpool in the United Kingdom.
The team examined 28 healthy, regularly active adults. Eighteen were women. The average age of the study volunteers was 32.
Their average body mass index (BMI)—a rough measure of body fat based on height and weight measurements—was just over 24. A BMI under 24.9 is considered normal weight.
Before the study, the people had been quite active, normally clocking about 10,000 steps daily. The researchers asked them to cut their activity drastically to 1500 steps a day.
After two weeks of sedentary life, the volunteers underwent a health testing. These results were compared to findings measured when the study started.
The team found the heart and lung health in these people dropped 4% just two weeks. Their waist circumference rose by nearly one-third of an inch.
In addition, their liver fat and total body fat increased up to 0.5%, and their insulin resistance increased and triglyceride levels went up slightly.
The team also found that after two weeks of regular physical activity, these measures all returned.
The findings show that even subtle increases in activity can have a positive effect on health.
The team suggest people move more and break up sedentary behaviors.
The lead author of the study is Kelly Bowden Davies.
The study was presented at the European Association for the Study of Diabetes meeting.
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