Specialists argue that prolonged periods of sitting are truly detrimental. In fact recent research indicates that prolonged periods of sitting and lack of whole body muscular movement are strongly linked to obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cancer and an overall higher risk of death.
Exercise alone is not sufficient. The body needs more attention to whole body muscular movement rather than only exercise, even if it is moderate to intense.
Those who already do too little exercise will suffer even more if they are prone to extended bouts of sitting.
However, some underlying mechanisms have already been identified. These include an enzyme known as lipoprotein lipase. It has an essential role in the regulation of key blood fats.
Therefore sitting and non-muscular activity may independently boost the risk of ill health, while sedentary behavior is a separate class of behavior with specific consequences for ill health. These are different than the ailments caused by taking too little exercise.
So it appears that responses of the body provoked by too much sitting cannot simply be eliminated by taking additional exercise.
The recommendations are not only advising exercise, but also encouraging people to include daily activities such as using the stairs rather than elevators and escalators, taking regular breaks during sedentary work, walking to the store rather than taking the car – all of which may be as important as exercise.