Physical activity, anything from doing chores to running, is key to improving health. But what happens to your body when it’s sedentary? In this blog post, we’ll dig deeper into the effects caused by inactivity.

Health Risks of Inactivity

According to The Department of Health and Human Services, 80% of all Americans are not meeting current physical activity recommendations. They say this contributes to several chronic health conditions and that physical activity, especially moderate-to-vigorous activity, can help offset these risks.

Short Term Effects

Health experts say people who lead an inactive lifestyle put themselves at more risk of:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Weight Gain
  • Weakened immune system
  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Poor blood circulation
  • A decrease in skeletal muscle mass
  • High cholesterol levels

Long Term Effects

Lack of inactivity also has long term effects. Over time, a sedentary lifestyle can lead to more serious health conditions including:

  • Coronary Heart Disease
  • Stroke
  • Type-2 Diabetes
  • Certain cancers which can lead to death

Physical Activity Guidelines

To acquire the most health benefits from physical activity, the Department of Health and Human Services recommends.

  • Adults: perform at least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity activity per week. This can include anything from a brisk walk to vacuuming, and mopping.
  • Older Adults: if possible, perform 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity physical activity including balance training and muscle-strengthening exercises.
  • Children and adolescents (6 to 17 years old): get at least 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous activity both aerobic, and muscle-strengthening exercises like walking, running, playing basketball, and jumping rope.
  • Preschool-aged Children (3 to 5 years old): be active throughout the day to enhance growth and development for at least three hours a day. HHS recommends adults encourage active play that’s light, moderate or vigorous intensity.

Simple Activities You Can Do to Prevent Issues in the Future

If you’ve been inactive, you may want to start slow to prevent injuries. Here are some simple activities you can do in your daily lives:

At home

  • Housework, cleaning, yard work, and gardening.
  • Stand up while on the phone
  • Stretch or lift hand weights while watching TV
  • Go on a walk around the neighborhood
  • Exercise using a workout video

At work

  • If you sit, get up and move around at least once an hour
  • See if your company can get you a stand-up desk
  • Take the stairs
  • Use your break to walk around the building

Monitored physical exercise and activity can help inactive patients. At New Heights Physical Therapy, we help our patients lead a healthier life through movement and education. You owe it to your body to lead a healthier life! If you’re interested in learning more ways to get active, give the professionals at New Heights Physical Therapy a call today!

Negative Effects of Inactivity in Portland OR and Vancouver WA

Seeing Patients in the following Portland and Vancouver areas:

SE Portland | NE Portland | Gresham | Happy Valley | Clackamas | Milwaukie | Mt Tabor | Belmont | Lloyd Center | Laurelhurst | Hollywood District | Downtown Portland | Beaverton | Tigard | Hillsboro | Cedar Mill | Cornell | Sylvan | Cedar Hills

Downtown Vancouver | Fruit Valley | Hazel Dell | Felida | Cascade Park | Camas Washington