According to a new study, women who spend too much time sitting are more likely to develop breast cancer than those who spend their free time more actively. This is not the first time scientists link sitting with an increased risk of cancer, but it’s the latest one that suggests spending too much time sitting on our behind might seriously affect our health.
Karen Basen-Engquist, a cancer researcher, explained that the new study has some really interesting results. Although there are previous studies suggesting that sitting too much is just as dangerous as lack of exercise, not many show that sitting could lead to cancer.
The recent study involved analyzing data from more than 184,000 people ages 50 to 70, who had been involved in the American Cancer Society Cancer Prevention Study II Nutrition Cohort. The subjects had to complete a questionnaire with questions like how many hours they spent exercising, working, doing household activities, watching TV, reading or playing with gadgets of all kind.
After the men and women answered the questions, the scientists followed the 77,462 female subjects and the 69,260 men for approximately 16 years to see the differences and the similarities between their health conditions. According to the study’s results, the women who spent more than 6 hours daily sitting were 10% more likely to develop cancer, compared to the female subjects who were more active and sat for no more than 3 hours every day.
The study suggests that the women who spent more than 6 hours sitting had a 65% higher risk of developing multiple myeloma, a 10% higher risk of breast cancer, and were 43% more likely to have breast cancer, compared to the women who sat less than three hours a day.
Although the study’s results did not suggest that men had a higher risk of cancer, it did find that men who were overweight or obese and spend their time sitting for long periods of time were 11% more likely to develop cancer.
Dr. Basen-Engquist talked about the results of the study saying that she finds it interesting that men are not as affected by sitting as women are. She believes it has to do with the fact that sitting may cause specific types of cancer that women develop, like ovarian and breast cancer.
The findings of the new study were detailed in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers, and Prevention.
Image Source: guim.co.uk