It is well known that being a couch potato is not healthy, but now a fresh dimension has been added - a new study shows that sedentary behaviour and lack of physical activity are linked with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).
Prolonged sitting time and reduced physical activity contributed to the prevalence of NAFLD in a study of middle-aged Koreans, supporting the importance of both reducing time spent sitting and increasing physical activity, say researchers.
Physical activity is known to reduce the incidence and mortality of various chronic diseases. However, more than one half of the average person's waking day involves sedentary activities associated with prolonged sitting such as watching TV and using the computer and other devices.
In the current study, the researchers found that both prolonged sitting time and decreased physical activity level were independently associated with increasing prevalence of NAFLD. Remarkably, these associations were also observed in patients with a body mass index (BMI) of less than 23.
Lead investigator Seungho Ryu from Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine explained that they found that prolonged sitting time and decreased physical activity level were positively associated with the prevalence of NAFLD in a large sample of middle-aged Koreans.
The study is published in the Journal of Hepatology.