Sitting for long periods increases the risk of type 2 diabetes

Sitting for long periods increases the risk of type 2 diabetes

People who sit a lot are more likely to develop diabetes
Many people in Germany spend most of the day sitting. Whether at work or at home, we don't move enough and sit a lot. This can have negative consequences for our body. If we sit for a long time, our risk of developing type 2 diabetes increases, scientists from Maastricht University in the Netherlands now claim.

Are you one of those people who sit all day? If you sit for a long time at work and don't have much exercise later at home, you may want to have your doctor examine you. Scientists from the Netherlands have now discovered that if we sit for a long time every day, the risk of type 2 diabetes increases. The researchers published the results of their study in the journal "Diabetologia".

Diabetes can damage the heart and kidneys and lead to amputations
In today's world, most people move too little. Many sit in the office all day at work and when they come home they are exhausted from work and just want to relax - often sitting on the sofa in front of the television. Sitting there could have negative consequences for our health, warn the scientists from the University of Maastricht. Even if you do sports, sitting for hours could still increase your risk of type 2 diabetes. Every additional hour in a sitting position, whether lounging in an office or lying down, increases the likelihood of type 2 diabetes, the scientists explain in their study. Diabetes causes your blood sugar level to rise sharply. If left untreated, the disease can affect the heart and kidneys, cause blindness and even lead to amputations.

Sport and exercise do not protect against the consequences of sitting
People with diabetes generally spend more time sitting - about 26 minutes more per day compared to people without diabetes, says lead researcher Julianne van der Berg from the University of Maastricht. The current results would only show that there is a connection between long sitting and type 2 diabetes, however, no exact conclusions about cause and effect could be determined, according to the Dutch doctor. Physical activity is generally important for our health and the study clearly shows that sitting is bad for us, continues Julianne van der Berg. The more you sit, the higher the risk of type 2 diabetes. And regardless of how much sport you do, the expert warns. The high prevalence of type 2 diabetes worldwide and the long time we spend sitting every day confirm the importance of the current study, the researchers add. Inactivity and nutrition are known to be factors that increase the risk of type 2 diabetes. Not only does the time we spend in front of the television or computer increase our risk of diabetes, but the snacks that are consumed alongside may also play a role.

Study examines 2,500 subjects for their seating habits
For the current study, the researchers collected data from almost 2,500 subjects whose average age was 60 years. All subjects were part of a population-based study in the Netherlands. In order to measure the time spent sitting, the test subjects wore accelerometers for eight days, the researchers report. During the study, the scientists calculated the sitting time spent each day, the number of breaks while sitting, longer sitting periods (30 minutes and more) and the average duration of the sitting periods.

The participants also checked their blood sugar, the doctors explain. They found that 56 percent of the participants had normal blood sugar. Fifteen percent had high blood sugar and 29 percent of the subjects had type 2 diabetes. People with type 2 diabetes sat the longest on average in the study. Sufferers spent more time sitting than people with high or normal blood sugar levels. The results of the study show that people who are already at an increased risk of diabetes should avoid sitting a lot - regardless of the amount of their other physical activity. In general, the time spent sitting should be kept as low as possible with regard to the risk of diabetes. (as)

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