Prolonged sitting at work may boost cancer risk

Last Updated: Nov 06, 2011, 16:18 PM IST

Washington: Uninterrupted periods of sitting at work are very unhealthy, and by frequently breaking up those long bouts with just a few minutes of light exercise lowers a person’s cancer risk, a new study has claimed.

According to Neville Owen from the Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute in Australia, one- to two-minute breaks from sitting can reduce levels of molecules in the body that are linked with cancer risk.

“It seems highly likely that the longer you sit, the higher your risk of cancer,” Live Science quoted Owen as saying.

The research has revealed that there’s more to physical activity than working out on a treadmill and a person who exercised for 30 minutes a day, which is the recommended amount of physical activity, is really only active for 3 percent of his or her day.

Alice Bender, a spokeswoman for AICR recommends taking small breaks from sitting during our day to “infuse the remaining 97 percent of our day with short periods of activity that can protect against many cancers.”

Owen’s study suggested that even very brief exercise may reduce cancer risk and one- to two-minute breaks were associated with smaller waists, less insulin resistance and lower levels of inflammation, all of which are risk factors for cancer.

ANI