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Study Finds that MS Patients Sit Too Often

June 16, 2016

It’s been reported by a UK team that if they are capable of doing so, those with MS should sit less and move around more often. Jet Veldhuijzen van Zanten and his colleagues argued that minimizing sedentary behavior has potential benefits for those with multiple sclerosis in a recent paper.

Van Zanten, the lead author of the study is a lecturer in biological psychology at the School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Birmingham in England. This paper was then published online by the Multiple Sclerosis Journal.

The co-authors of the study wrote that we all must “stand together and consider sedentary lifestyle as a new target for managing MS and improving the lives of people with this chronic condition.”

The authors then went on to explain how the mobility issues of those with MS can lead to hours of sitting which ultimately worsens their disease. Research has proven that too many hours spent sitting may cause more deaths than smoking or obesity, this also goes for those that exercise more than seven hours a week and sit for excessive periods of time.

Those with MS with mild to moderate limitations on their mobility are inactive from around seven to ten hours a day which research shows represents 47 percent to 85 percent of the waking hours of the day.  Research has also shown that MS patients sit for longer periods of time and that those with progressive MS rather than relapsing remitting, older and age more severe cases were factors that are also contributing to sitting for extended periods of time.

Symptoms like fatigue, pain, depression and chronic lung disease influence those with MS to being more sedentary, which includes any behavior while awake that involves a very little amount of energy while sitting or reclining.

In order to reverse this still behavior among patients, the authors suggested an agenda for developing interventions that focuses on those with mobility disabilities and looks at other associations with MS symptoms like immune dysfunctions, sedentary patterns, breaks from sitting or reclining and times of the day that this behavior occurs.