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Sitting Ups Heart Failure Risk in Men

Update Date: Jan 21, 2014 06:45 PM EST
Heart, obesity
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Sitting is bad for your heart, a new study suggests.

New research reveals that sitting for long periods of time increases heart failure risk in men. The findings are even true for those who exercise regularly.

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Lead researcher Deborah Rohm Young of Kaiser Permanente in Pasadena, California found that the best way to prevent heart failure is engaging in high levels of physical activity and having low levels of sedentary time.

"Be more active and sit less. That's the message here," Young said in a news release.

The study involved 84,170 men ages 45 to 69 without heart failure. Researchers calculated the men's exercise levels in metabolic equivalent of task, a measure of the body's energy use. They also measured the men's sedentary levels.

After an average of nearly eight years of follow-up, researchers found that men with low levels of physical activity were 52 percent more likely to develop heart failure than those with high physical activity levels.

The findings also revealed that men who spent five or more hours a day sitting were 34 percent more likely to develop heart failure than those who spend no more than two hours a day sitting. Researchers noted that this was true regardless of how much the men exercised.

Researchers found that men who sat for at least five hours a day a got little exercise were twice as likely to suffer heart failure compared to those who were very physically active and sat for two hours or less a day.

The findings are published in the journal Circulation: Heart Failure.

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