Sitting for long periods of time may increase women’slikelihood of developing risk factors for type 2 diabetes, according to a studypublished in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine and reported by MSNBC

For the study, researchers at the University of Leicester inthe United Kingdom collected information from more than 500 people living inthe United Kingdom who were all attending a diabetes screening program.Individuals reported how much time they spent sitting on an average weekday inthe past week. Researchers then collected blood samples to test for diabetesrisk factors.  

On average, women said they spent five hours a day sitting,while men said they spent six hours a day sitting. 

Researchers found that for women, prolonged sitting waslinked with insulin resistance and high levels of markers of inflammation, bothrisk factors for type 2 diabetes. Moreover, researchers found that theincreased risk persisted even for women who engaged in moderate or vigorousphysical activity.  

“If these results are replicated, they have implications forlifestyle recommendations, public health policy and health behavior changeinterventions, as they suggest that enabling women to spend less time sittingis an important factor in preventing chronic disease,” the researchers wrote.  

This is not the first study to link prolonged sitting withdiabetes or even early death. A study published in the American Journal of Epidemiologyfound that people who sat more than six hours a day in their leisure time weresignificantly more likely to die in a 14-year period than those who sat lessthan three hours.  

Researchers are hoping that individuals will increase theirphysical activity in order to combat some of these negative effects.