A sedentary or inactive lifestyle had been a reality for a lot of us, even before the pandemic. As we tried to juggle between household chores, work, a family and social life, our health often took a back seat.
All of us realised and understood the changes or effects an inactive lifestyle was bringing upon our bodies, but had somehow made peace with it, and were finally okay with it.
We had either found out ways to accept it or found activities that could help us change it.
However, with the pandemic and stay at home restrictions to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus, even people who were once active found themselves struggling to get some physical activity out there.
Perhaps, not everyone has the motivation for a home workout or a morning Yoga session, with so much going on around them. ALSO READ:Balancing Between Work and Sexual Life during a Coronavirus: How It Works?
However, given that it has been months and we do not know how long we are going to have to live this way (though restrictions easing), you must start getting some physical activity in your routine if you are seeing the following effects of inactive lifestyle on your physical and mental health.
Inactive Lifestyle Is Affecting Your Health Through;
One of the most obvious and common effects of a sedentary lifestyle experienced by people, especially during the lockdown is weight gain.
While some people are obsessing over a few kilos they are gaining due to cosmetic reasons, it is important to understand that a few kilos may not make a lot of difference when it comes to your health.
Being overweight or obese is linked with various health issues, and can increase the risk of diseases such as type-2 diabetes and cancer, studies have shown.
More than looking a certain way, one should be more conscious of their diet, and include regular physical activity in their routine to stay healthy overall.
The more you sit and the more inactive you are, the more likely you are to lose flexibility.
While some people may argue that it is not the end of the world, the problem with loss of flexibility is that it increases the chances of muscle injuries, and also makes your muscles weaker, which can be harmful to you in the long run.
Risk Of Osteoporosis (Weak Bone)
Osteoporosis is a condition where the bones become weak, and more susceptible to fractures. It is common in older people, especially women after menopause.
Being sedentary can increase the risk of osteoporosis as exercise and physical activity helps to strengthen them.
Increased Chances Of Poor Mental Health
The lockdown and uncertainty of the pandemic has already had a bad impact on our mental health. However, a sedentary lifestyle can just make it worse.
People who step out for a walk can take a break from the stress-causing factors of their life, improve mindfulness.
Exercise is also known to release some happy hormones in our body, which can help reduce chances of such mental health issues.
Slow Metabolism, Digestive Troubles
Metabolism is the rate at which your body burns the food you eat for energy. When you do not move, your body gets the indication that you do not need energy, and the metabolism slows down.
A slow metabolism can lead to results such as weight gain. Physical activity can also impact digestion by slowing it down, leading to weight gain, stomach problems.
What Are The Way Forward?
According to studies, with the right amount of physical activity practiced over a period of time, one can undo the effects of a sedentary lifestyle.
While exercising at the gym or a fitness centre may not be options as yet, even as they have opened up during the unlock phases, an active lifestyle doesn’t necessarily have to be strenuous physical exercise.
To include some physical activity in your daily routine, here are a few things you can do.
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Walk to the market for your daily groceries.
- Take a walk in the park whenever you can.
- Practice home workouts with your family to make them more fun, and benefit everyone.
- Crack jokes and laugh with family and friends
- Consume or eat a healthy diet.