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In her podcast Dr Hazel Wallace was joined by Dr Zoe Williams and Dr John Sykes to discuss 'lifestyle medicine and the NHS'. Around 16 minutes into the conversation the trio begin to discuss concerning statistics surrounding sedentary behaviour, remarking on the fact that the average Brit spends an astonishing 70% of their waking hours sitting both at work, on the commute and at home. Less than a century ago the population walked an average of 15,000 steps a day, while today we're all aiming for 10,000 and most people fail even to achieve this.
Dr John Sykes says: "Research shows that if we are active for a certain period of that day then yes, we can [offset the risks of sitting all day]. But the amount we have to do is quite a lot. In fact we'd have to do 60-75 minutes of moderate intensity activity in that day in order to offset seven to eight hours of sitting. For most people and the busy schedules we have, that's unrealistic and not really very manageable.
"But if we are able to stand for periods of the day when we would be sitting; if we're able to go for a walk, or get up every hour, maybe just to stretch our legs a little bit, that will offset the risks of sitting for long periods. Which is quite encouraging because we can make those small changes to our day, whether it be having a standing desk, setting an alarm so that we do get up every hour or so to stretch our legs a bit. It's very important that we don't succumb to the chair."
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