Sorry to be the bringer of bad news, but…a new study tells us that the time you spend sitting on your butt is shortening your life.

Yep. You heard right.

  • Watching tv
  • Surfing the net
  • Driving your car
  • Working at your desk
  • Even reading your favorite blog – Health Habits

All of these activities are killing you.


According to the researchers, being physically active doesn’t make up for all those hours spent sitting on your butt.

The Research

Researchers analyzed survey responses from 123,216 individuals (53,440 men and 69,776 women) who had no history of cancer, heart attack, stroke, or emphysema/other lung disease enrolled in the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Prevention II study in 1992.

They examined the amount of time spent sitting and physical activity in relation to mortality between 1993 and 2006.

They found that more leisure time spent sitting was associated with higher risk of mortality, particularly in women.

  • Women who reported more than six hours per day of sitting were 37 % more likely to die during the time period studied than those who sat fewer than 3 hours a day.
  • Men who sat more than 6 hours a day were 18 % more likely to die than those who sat fewer than 3 hours per day.

Associations were stronger for cardiovascular disease mortality than for cancer mortality.

And while being physically active didn’t eliminate the effect of all those hours of sitting, when they compared the combination of excessive sitting with a lack of physical activity, the picture looked even worse.

  • Women and men who both sat more and were less physically were 94% and 48% more likely, respectively, to die compared with those who reported sitting the least and being most active.

So…Let’s Recap


  • With exercise, women who sit were 37% more likely to kick the bucket
  • Without exercise, that number jumps to 94%


  • With exercise, male couch potatoes were 18% more likely to croak
  • Without exercise – 48% more likely

And why do they think that sitting on our collective keisters is so bad for us?

“Several factors could explain the positive association between time spent sitting and higher all-cause death rates,” said Dr. Patel. “Prolonged time spent sitting, independent of physical activity, has been shown to have important metabolic consequences, and may influence things like triglycerides, high density lipoprotein, cholesterol, fasting plasma glucose, resting blood pressure, and leptin, which are biomarkers of obesity and cardiovascular and other chronic diseases.”


Get off your butt and move around a little


Like this article???

If you like this article, don’t forget to subscribe to @healthhabits. When you subscribe, my friends at MailChimp will make sure to send you an email every time I post something new here at the blog.

As well, you also get access to the series of Supplement Reports that I am publishing this year.

button subscribe