Women suffer from heart attacks every 90 seconds. Women with abdominal obesity have a 63% higher risk of cancer. These statistics can be reduced with a lifestyle change, and for all you women with stressful jobs, NEAT and meditation may be your answer. Combat heart attacks with NEAT and fight off stomach fat with stretching/active rest.
You can burn hundreds of calories a day just by moving more and sitting less. It takes energy to move even the smallest muscle. NEAT is non-exercising activity thermogenesis and individuals can lose about 477 calories a day without exercising — just by taking 2 minute breaks throughout the day and being active. The fact is 50% of women die during their 1st heart attack and 46% become disabled after 1st heart attack. So, let’s prevent the heart attack in the first place by putting NEAT to work in our lives.
Option A: Go for short walks every hour. Sitting for long periods of time has been linked with heart disease, diabetes, cancer and obesity, so make an appointment with yourself to get up hourly and go for a walk which will boost energy, burn calories and decrease stiffness. If this isn’t an option, sit down and stand up from your office chair 10-15 times and see if that doesn’t get your heart rate up! If you’re “fit” take this hourly break to walk the stairs 1-2 minutes.
Option B: Pace or practice balance. Pacing while on the phone is a great way to get some movement in. You could also practice balance by standing on one leg while on the phone (stand near a wall if this is difficult for you).
Option C: When you’re home watching TV, decide to do body weight exercises during commercials. See attached photo.
STRETCH/ACTIVE REST/BETTER SLEEP
Chronic stress sends signals to the brain to add visceral fat to women to protect their abdominal organs. So yes, your stress levels are directly connected to your belly fat or “pooch”. Combat chronic stress by actively resting and meditating.
Option A: While watching television at home, lie on a yoga block or foam roller during commercials and take that time to allow gravity and gentle movements to ease your body.
Option B: Download an app that will walk you through “yoga nidra” or yogic sleep and listen to it before bed. Or listen to soothing earth sounds or calming music. Disconnect from social media, emails and calendars. Let this guided meditation take you into a more restful sleep.
Type 2 diabetes is the fastest growing preventable disease in the world. Couple this with the high rate of cancers associated with abdominal obesity and we must make a change for the better. With stretching and active rest, women can decrease their stress and increase the number of hours of homeostatic sleep.
Let’s make Columbia stronger by integrating bursts of movement throughout the day and getting a better nights rest.