Spending less time sitting and fewer hours in front of the television means a longer life, according to a new study conducted at the Pennington Biomedical Research Centre in the U.S. state of Louisiana.
People who sit for fewer than three hours a day on average could increase their lifespan by as much as two years, according to the study published in the British Medical Journal.
And fewer than two hours per day spent watching television lengthens lives by around 1.4 years, the research team led by Peter Katzmarzyk found.
“The outcomes indicate that long periods of sitting and watching television are cutting the life expectancies of the American population,” according to evaluated data from the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), a databank on US lifestyles.
Additional U.S. studies taking in a total of 167,000 adults were used to compile data on the amount of time spent sitting and causes of death of all kinds.
Analysis of these studies provided an indication of the consequences of a sedentary lifestyle on longevity, but the results
should be treated with caution, the researchers said.
The conclusions drawn were purely theoretical and failed to take into account differences in the various age and population groups.
In addition, the analysis was based on data on sitting and television time provided by the subjects themselves, implying that errors or false information could have contaminated the study.