The winter season is undoubtedly the time of year when we most often watch television in addition to the hours spent in front of the computer and the screen of the telephones. Studies indicate that the sedentary lifestyle of “screensophages” represents an important risk factor for premature death.
Several studies show unequivocally that regular physical activity is one of the lifestyle factors most closely associated with a better quality of life and a reduced risk of premature death. Thus, active people are less at risk of being affected by a range of chronic diseases, including:
– heart disease,
– type 2 diabetes,
– neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease
– several types of cancer: colon, breast, prostate, endometrium and pancreas.
Regular exercise significantly improves muscle sensitivity to insulin, an effect that helps control blood sugar levels and thus reduces the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Another beneficial but little known effect of exercise is the reduction of chronic inflammation, a condition that is an important risk factor for the development of all chronic diseases. While the muscles of active people secrete factors that reduce inflammation and therefore reduce the risk of these diseases, the level of inflammatory molecules is higher in the body of sedentary people and can, over time, promote their development. . Being inactive is really bad for your health.
Screens: 46% increased chance of dying prematurely
In industrialized countries, the number of hours spent in front of the television is an important factor of a sedentary lifestyle and it is not uncommon for some people to watch more than 24 hours of television per week, time multiplied if we add the time spent in front of computer or phone screens.
This is a very bad habit. A study carried out in Australia with more than 8,000 people shows that a person who watches more than four hours of television a day is almost 46% more likely to die prematurely than one who watches less than two hours a day. day.
In practice, researchers estimate that each hour spent in front of the television or a screen increases the risk of dying from heart disease by 18%!
If the time spent in front of the television or a screen is so harmful, it is because it prevents us from being active and using our muscles, even for light activities. In addition, time spent in front of a screen is associated with very poor eating habits and promotes overweight, yet obesity reduces life expectancy by five years, while physical activity can add five years of healthy life.
Lollgen et al. Physical activity and all-cause mortality: an updated meta-analysis with different intensity categories. Int J Sports Med, 30:213-24.
Handschin et al. The role of exercise and PGC1_ in inflammation and chronic disease. Nature, 454:463-69.
Dunstan et al. Television viewing time and mortality: The Australian Diabetes, obesity and lifestyle study (AusDiab). Traffic, 121:384-91.