You could increase your life expectancy by two years by sitting down for less than three hours a day, according to a new study.
Scientists claim that you can live longer simply by not vegging on the couch for hours on end. Similarly watching television for less than two hours a day can increase your life expectancy by a year and a half, according to the study published online in the journal BMJ Open.
The researchers from Louisiana University, in the USA, looked at previous studies involving 167 000 adults aged 18 to 90. These had all compared how much time people had spent sitting down and watching television with how long they had lived.
They calculated that 27% of all deaths in America are partly caused by adults spending too much time sitting down while 19% were due to watching too much TV.
The findings raise concerns for office workers who sit behind their desks for most of the day. According to a report by iafrica.com, co-author Peter Katzmarzyk of the Pennington Biomedical Research Centre told AFP: "On the other hand, there are many strategies to reduce sitting time, such as standing more at work using a standing desk or treadmill desk, having walking meetings, going to see someone down the hall rather than emailing them etc."
More ways to improve your life expectancy
According to similar studies you can live longer by:
- Eating 40% less food. Researchers at the Institute of Health Ageing at University College London, who are developing treatment for the "disease" of ageing, say this could extend a person's life by 20 years.
- Eating a "superfood" such as broccoli. Nutritionists believe that leafy greens such as broccoli, brussel sprouts and cabbage, which form part of the cruciferous family of vegetables, are great for fighting cancer.
- Not smoking. According to research done by scientists from the University of Bristol, one cigarette shaves on average 11 minutes off your life. So smoking 20 cigarettes a day for the next three-and-a-half years will cut ten years off your life.
Sources: Daily Mail, iafrica.com, BBC.com