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Cancer Risk from Sitting Too Much


According to the American Cancer Society, women who stay seated for more than 6 hours a day during their free time have at least a 10% increased risk of getting any cancer than women who sit for 3 hours or less per day. Specific cancers that become more of a risk for women include multiple myeloma (65% greater risk), ovarian cancer (43% greater risk), and invasive breast cancer (10% greater risk). The study also showed that for most men, sitting time didn’t increase cancer risk, except for those that were obese.

Some tips to help you move include:

  • Parking farther away from where you’re going to encourage walking
  • Standing during conference calls and meetings
  • Taking 1-2 minute standing or walking breaks every hour
  • Taking the stairs when possible
  • Exercising during lunch with colleagues/friends
  • Walking or biking when taking care of errands
  • Changing your office environment by using a standing desk
  • Using technology to setup alerts as reminders to keep moving

Besides helping to lower your risk of getting cancer, staying active helps prevent an increase in blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist and abnormal cholesterol levels. If sitting in front of a television after work is a habit that is hard for you to break, consider incorporating an activity while watching your favorite show or playing video games. Tips to keep in mind include:

  • Walking around and moving during commercial breaks
  • Choosing to play an active-play video game that’ll boost your heart rate
  • Watching television shows while riding an exercise bike or using a treadmill

With any new exercise routine, it is always best to gradually increase the intensity of your activity. It is recommended for adults to get at least 150 minutes of an activity with moderate intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise each week, spread throughout the week. If possible, try to sit less often and find ways to move throughout the day to help gain healthy lifestyle habits.

For more information on American Cancer Society’s research on sitting too much and increasing cancer risk in women, go to:

To read more tips to help reduce your hours of sitting from the MD Anderson Center, click here:

1 Comment
  • venus mounts

    Hello there! This article couldn’t be written any better!
    Looking through this article reminds me of my previous roommate!
    He continually kept talking about this. I am going to send
    this information to him. Fairly certain he’ll have a great read.
    Thanks for sharing!

    April 21, 2020 23:04
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