According to a new study published in the journal of Hepatology, sitting for too long may cause fatty liver disease. This condition has been observed in middle aged participants, who have spent more than five hours per day at the desk and carried out very little physical activities.
Researchers in Korea reinforce the belief that many diseases could stem out of sedentariness. Previous studies showed that lack of physical exercise could be extremely noxious for women, who might run increased risks of developing cancer. Yet, a new research indicates that fatty liver disease may also be caused by prolonged sitting.
The study was conducted on 139,056 men and women in their middle age, who had to respond to various questionnaires related to their physical activities and diets. In addition, medical experts tested respondents to see how their health condition has been affected by sedentariness.
Based on their answers, scientists have noticed that men and women who spent more than five hours at the desk per day had 9% more chances of developing NAFLD, also known as Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease. This disease presupposes a large amount of fat being gathered on the surface of the liver. The buildup eventually leads to liver failure, scientists have explained.
NAFLD, as the name says it, is not caused by alcohol consumption. Until recently, it was believed poor diets based on fats and alcohol are the main factors of this condition, but new investigations have revealed that fat may accumulate on the liver as a result of other circumstances, as well.
Individuals, who sit more than five hours per day and make little or no physical exercise at all have more chances of developing fatty liver disease. This tendency has been noticed even among slim individuals, whose BMI (body mass index) was set at 23 points.
While some questions related to diets still remain, the new study has clearly indicated that exercising can help our liver function better. Exercising for one hour and then, spending the rest of the day on the couch will not help either. Tests have revealed that these individuals had the same liver malfunctions as people who spent five hours or more at the desk.
The best recommendation would be to alternate physical activities with desk- or couch-related ones. This way, you can prevent diseases and keep your feet rested, at the same time.