How Sitting For Long Periods Might Contribute To Certain Cancers

June 17, 2014 3:11 PM

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How Sitting For Long Periods Might Contribute To Certain Cancers

Sitting for extended periods of time has been a sort of 21st century epidemic – TV-gazing isn’t new, but streaming movies and tablets aren’t helping our habit of sitting. In studies, sedentariness has been connected to obesity, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease and diabetes; it’s even linked to an earlier death. Now, a new study in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute suggests that sitting is also connected to cancer – not all types, but to colon and endometrial (uterine) cancer. And it’s not just because sitting takes us away from exercising – even those who sit a lot and exercise have an increased risk for these cancers. This means that there’s something intrinsic about the unhealthiness of sitting apart from lack of exercise.

To study this question, the team from University of Regensburg carried out a meta-analysis of 43 earlier studies, including over 4 million people. The studies had all periodically queried the participants on how much time they spent sitting – TV-related sitting, occupational sitting, and total sitti...

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