I think that it is safe to assume that we are all aware that physical inactivity is not the best for optimal health. Well, a study in the Lancet, reveals that physical inactivity may be much more worse than we think.

According to the study, 5.3 million deaths around the world were caused by physical inactivity in 2008. Compare this to the fewer 5 million deaths that were caused by smoking…

So in other words, more deaths were attributable to physical inactivity than those that were attributed to smoking.

“Physical inactivity has a large impact on the health of the world. In fact, its impact is comparable to that of cigarette smoking,” says researcher I-Min Lee, ScD, an epidemiologist at the Harvard School of Public Health, in a news conference.

While cigarette smoking adds many harmful chemicals to the body, physical inactivity prevents the body’s natural cleansing elements from operating. For example, excessive sitting causes the buildup of cholesterol, triglycerides and blood sugar. The second that we get up to move, blood sugar, cholesterol and triglycerides improve! In short, many positive biochemical processes kick in the minute that we get up out of the chair. Every little bit tends to help, but high-intensity interval exercise seems to be the best.

So yes, we are all busy. But just find a minimum of 10 minutes per day to raise your heart rate. If you can do an intense workout, then great! But anything that you choose to do will be better than nothing (which is the equivalent of smoking)!