City Guides » Well Being Guide

Making a stand

How to avoid sitting your way to an early grave

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"The fact that we have mobile devices doesn't mean we're mobile while using them," says Sara Kirk, Canada Research Chair at Dal. She explores the links between chronic diseases and the built environment. Schools and offices, for example, are set up for prolonged sitting—and thus encourage diabetes, heart problems, obesity. "Sitting is bad," says Kirk. "Particularly sitting around watching TV." She shares the following numbers, from Stats Can and US organization Just Stand, saying Canada's sedentary troubles are similar to the States'. But Kirk says just getting up from the screen for five minutes every hour to walk to another room is a fix. "The smallest amount of change will be good for you."

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