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What Are the Consequences of Physical Inactivity?

Sakshi loves being a couch potato. She doesn’t exercise daily and basically has a sedentary or inactive lifestyle. This has been bugging Sakshi’s mother for a very long time. She is actively trying to get Sakshi to change her lifestyle of constantly sitting and lying down and having little to no exercise.

But nothing has worked till now. Recently, Sakshi heard that being physically inactive can have negative effects on both the mind and body. She saw that physical inactivity is a silent killer that brings in a lot of diseases and illnesses. However, she still wants to learn more before wanting to change her entire lifestyle.

If you are facing a similar dilemma to Sakshi, then you are in the right place. In this article, we will look at the consequences of physical inactivity in the lives of modern men and women.

Physical Inactivity: The Silent Killer on the Prowl

Sakshi has always heard that smoking is highly injurious to health. But before today she has never heard that physical inactivity can be detrimental to her health too. Thankfully, she now knows that a sedentary lifestyle can lead to the following modern concerns and negative health effects.

  • Obesity

Obesity rates are soaring all across the globe. Your chances of suffering from this condition are further increased if you take a terrible diet too. Obesity is a condition that can affect people of all ages. And this ailment further opens up the body to a horde of other diseases.

According to some reports, obesity is the cause of over 14.2 million deaths of people all across the globe in a single year!

  • Type 2 Diabetes

A sedentary lifestyle can also make your body resistant to insulin. This would increase the susceptibility of the body to diabetes. According to national statistics, roughly 40 million adults suffer from diabetes in India. This number is even rising steadily!

Diabetes is also a lethal condition. It can drastically lower the standard of living of an individual. If you suffer from diabetes, then you must keep a check otherwise this illness can prove to be fatal.

  • High Blood Pressure and Arteriosclerosis

If your body is not in a good shape, then that could also lead to plaque accumulation in your blood vessels. This would make the blood vessels thicken. In this manner, the blood vessels will also lose their elasticity.

In these conditions, the blood will be forced to find its way through narrowed passages while exerting extra force on the blood vessels. This means that the individual has high blood pressure.

An individual suffering from high blood pressure would always have a reading of over 140/90 mm Hg. This reading also points to the fact that the individual is getting a limited supply of blood to the heart.

  • Heart Diseases

The heart is an organ that basically never stops working. And this is also the organ that bears the most burden if you have an inactive lifestyle. This is mainly due to the fact that the heart has to work harder than usual to pump blood through your veins or the muscles would gradually begin to die.

This condition in the long run can trigger a heart attack or onset of other heart diseases. Further, a sedentary lifestyle can also result in higher levels of bad cholesterol and LDL. This is bad news for your heart.

Also, according to a recent survey, India has more cardiac patients than any other country in the world! This says something about the kind of lifestyle that is followed in our country.

  • Stroke

This is another condition that can be caused due to inactivity and high blood pressure. Due to narrowed blood vessels, which are caused due to plaque buildup, enough blood, which contains the necessary oxygen, might not reach the brain. In this case, the brain stops functioning properly and a stroke begins.

Given all of these horrible possibilities arising out of a sedentary lifestyle, doesn’t it just seem easier to take some time out for a light to medium workout? It certainly seems that way to Sakshi.

Other Negative Effects of an Inactive Lifestyle

Beyond what has been discussed till now, some other negative effects of a sedentary lifestyle are:

  • Losing muscle strength and endurance due to lack of proper muscle use
  • Weaker bones
  • Reduced mineral content in bones
  • Worse metabolism and the body might have trouble in breaking down fats and sugars
  • Improperly functioning immune system
  • Poor blood circulation
  • Higher chances of inflammation
  • Enhanced chances of hormonal imbalance
  • Increased chances of osteoporosis and falls
  • Higher risk of certain cancers like breast, colon, or uterine cancers
  • Feelings of anxiety and depression
  • Increased risk of premature death

How Can I Make a Change Today?

After learning about so many negative effects, Sakshi is adamant to make a change in her lifestyle starting today. But what can she really do?

  • Start with a low-intensity home workout. You can even follow a workout video on your TV or the internet
  • Be active around the house by doing household chores, gardening, or yard work
  • Try to keep moving as much as possible even when you are watching TV or working at home for long hours
  • Life hand weight in your free time
  • Start your morning with some gentle yoga stretches or pedal an exercise bike
  • Go for walks in your neighborhood with your kids, friends, or your pet
  • Stand up when you are talking on the phone
  • Get some exercise equipment in your homes like treadmills, elliptical trainers, yoga balls, exercise mats, and stretch bands

How Can I Be More Active at My Workplace?

Sakshi is also planning to join her office soon. This means that she would have less time for herself and would have to incorporate her workout by making some changes at her workplace. Follow the tips that Sakshi did to have a more active lifestyle at work.

  • Get up from your chair once every hour and move around a bit
  • Stand when you are speaking on the phone
  • See if your company has a gym or treadmill desk
  • Choose the stairs instead of the elevator
  • Use some part of your lunch hour to take a walk around the building
  • Stand up and walk towards your colleague’s office instead of sending an email
  • See if your colleagues and co-workers are open to having a walking or standing meeting instead of sitting in a conference room

Say Goodbye to Your Sedentary Lifestyle!

Sakshi has been following most of these tips diligently. She now has an active lifestyle. Have you been able to do the same? 

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