Sedentary Behavior in Dutch Workers. Differences Between Occupations and Business Sectors

VU University Amsterdam, Amsterdamo, North Holland, Netherlands
American Journal of Preventive Medicine (Impact Factor: 4.53). 01/2008; 33(6):450-4. DOI: 10.1016/j.amepre.2007.07.033
Source: PubMed


Sedentary behavior is an independent risk factor for excess body weight and other health problems. There are no published data on sitting time at work, or how this is related to occupation and sector (branch of business). No published study has shown whether extended sitting at work is compensated for by sitting less during leisure time.
This study used data from a continuous cross-sectional survey, from 2000 to 2005 (N=7720). Workers were asked how many minutes they spent sitting during the preceding day, both at work and in their leisure time. To test differences in sitting times among occupational groups and sectors, descriptive analyses and analyses of variance were carried out in 2006.
On average, the Dutch working population reported sitting for 7 hours each day, one third of which was at work. Occupational groups and sectors differed significantly in sedentary behavior, mainly involving sitting periods at work. Workers spending long periods sitting at work did not compensate by sitting less during their leisure time.
Workers spend a substantial part of their waking and working time seated. Those who sat for long periods at work did not compensate for this lack of activity by adopting less-sedentary behaviors during leisure time. To prevent health problems, the best approach may be to reduce sedentary behavior at work, when traveling to and from work, and during leisure time.

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Available from: Karin Proper, Mar 11, 2015
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    • "In addition, recent evidence suggests that higher amounts of sitting time are associated with increased risk of having the metabolic syndrome (Edwardson et al., 2012) independently of physical activity (Bankoski et al., 2011). Many adults spend much of their working hours sitting in addition to sitting in leisure-time and during transportation (Aadahl et al., 2013; Jans et al., 2007). Thus, prolonged sitting time may constitute a public health concern. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Recent studies suggest that physical inactivity as well as sitting time are associated with metabolic syndrome. Our aim was to examine joint associations of leisure time physical activity and total daily sitting time with metabolic syndrome. Methods: Leisure time physical activity and total daily sitting time were assessed by self-report in 15,235 men and women in the Danish Health Examination Survey 2007-2008. Associations between leisure time physical activity, total sitting time and metabolic syndrome were investigated in logistic regression analysis. Results: Adjusted odds ratios (OR) for metabolic syndrome were 2.14 (95% CI: 1.88-2.43) amongst participants who were inactive in leisure time compared to the most active, and 1.42 (95% CI: 1.26-1.61) amongst those who sat for ≥10h/day compared to <6h/day. Within strata of leisure time physical activity, sitting time was positively associated with metabolic syndrome. For example, in the moderate to vigorous physical activity stratum, ORs were 1.31 (95% CI: 1.11-1.54) and 1.48 (95% CI: 1.16-1.88) in participants who sat 6-10 and ≥10h/day compared to <6h/day. Conclusion: Higher amounts of sitting time seem to be associated with a higher prevalence of metabolic syndrome, even amongst individuals who are physically active.
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    • "A rapidly expanding body of evidence suggests that high amounts of daily sitting time are associated with increased risk of adverse health outcomes in adults, even among individuals who are physically active in leisure time [1-3]. Studies have found that working adults are sitting down for about one third to one half of their workday [4-7]. In addition to sitting at work, adults also spent hours sitting in leisure-time and during transportation. "
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    ABSTRACT: Evidence suggests that sitting time is adversely associated with health risks. However, previous epidemiological studies have mainly addressed mortality whereas little is known of the risk of coronary heart disease. This study aimed to investigate total sitting time and risk of myocardial infarction, coronary heart disease incidence and all-cause mortality. In the Danish Health Examination Survey (DANHES) conducted in 2007-2008 we tested the hypothesis that a higher amount of daily total sitting time is associated with greater risk of myocardial infarction, coronary heart disease and all-cause mortality. The study population consisted of 71,363 men and women aged 18-99 years without coronary heart disease. Participants were followed for myocardial infarction, coronary heart disease and mortality in national registers to August 10, 2012. Cox regression analyses were performed with adjustment for potential confounders and multiple imputation for missing values. During a mean follow-up period of 5.4 years 358 incident cases of myocardial infarction, 1,446 of coronary heart disease, and 1,074 deaths from all causes were registered. The hazard ratios associated with 10 or more hours of daily sitting compared to less than 6 hours were 1.38 (95% CI: 1.01, 1.88) for myocardial infarction, 1.07 (95% CI: 0.91, 1.27) for coronary heart disease and 1.31 (95% CI: 1.09, 1.57). Compared to sitting less than 6 hours per day and being physically active in leisure time, the hazard ratios of sitting more than 10 hours per day and also being physically inactive in leisure time were 1.80 (95% CI: 1.15, 2.82) for myocardial infarction, 1.42 (95% CI: 1.11, 1.81) for coronary heart disease, and 2.29 (95% CI: 1.82, 2.89) for all-cause mortality. The results suggest that a higher amount of daily total sitting time is associated with all-cause mortality, particularly among inactive adults. In relation to coronary heart, disease results were less clear. This paper adds new evidence to the limited data on the evidence of sitting time and cardiovascular disease and mortality.
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    • "Overall, women in white collar occupations, professionals and women working full time or more, spent most time sitting during the week. Jans et al. [28] also found that, among 7720 Dutch workers, professionals (i.e., legislators and senior managers, scientific and artistic professions) and white collar workers (i.e., clerks) sat longer than the average Dutch worker (i.e., more than 7 hours a day). No distinction was made between men and women. "
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