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Recent research has revealed that sitting for long periods could be as bad for your heart as smoking. But how can something that demands so little of your cardiovascular system be so harmful?
It could have to do with troponins, proteins produced by cardiac muscle cells when they are hurt or dying. In an observational study published in the journal Circulation, a correlation was discovered between people who sat for 10 hours or more and had above-average troponin levels in their blood.
The levels were below those indicative of a heart attack but were high enough to constitute what researchers called a “subclinical cardiac injury.” Study authors note that sedentary behavior, which is associated with obesity, insulin resistance and fat deposition in the heart, can lead to injured heart cells and therefore more troponins.
Counteract a long day at your desk by taking the stairs, parking in the far parking lot, and standing or walking during meetings.