Study: Number of Americans meeting excercise minimum increases slightly--but time sitting increases, too | Time

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Doctors and public health officials have been urging Americans to get more active and try to exercise at least 150 minutes per week at a moderate level, or 75 minutes weekly at a vigorous level. Even if you can’t fit in that much activity, studies show that any exercise is better than none when it comes to health benefits like lowering risk of diabetes, heart disease and obesity. . . .

In the 2007-2008 survey, 63% of the participants engaged in the recommended amount of aerobic physical activity, and that share was about the same—65%—in the 2015-2016 survey, the most recent years for which data are available.

While that’s not encouraging news, it’s not exactly discouraging either, since exercise rates didn’t drop. But when Bao’s team looked at sedentary behavior, they were more disappointed. In the first survey period, 16% of the people reported sitting for over six hours a day while also not meeting the recommended amount of physical activity, and that proportion increased to nearly 19% in the second survey. The mean number of hours per day that people spent sitting increased from 5.7 hours to 6.4 hours in that time period.