March 08, 2013
The more you sit each day, the greater your risk of developing a chronic disease, according to a new study.
Researchers from Australia and the United States say prolonged sitting increases the likelihood of developing potentially deadly diseases and conditions such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure.
“For some of these conditions...we saw this kind of stair step increase that, at the high levels of sitting you saw higher odds of having the disease, certainly that was true for diabetes," says Richard Rosenkranz from Kansas State University. "And then we saw increased risk at higher levels for high blood pressure as well as for any chronic disease.”
The World Health Organization blames sedentary lifestyles for approximately two million deaths each year and considers physical inactivity to be one of the 10 leading causes of death and disability worldwide.
The study also revealed that exercising every morning for 30 minutes doesn't alleviate the risk if a person spends the next eight hours sitting at a desk.
“We’re trying to say that, not only do we need to continue to tell these messages about getting in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity like walking or cycling or some exercise at the gym," Rosenkranz says, "we also need to be thinking about finding ways not to sit so much during the day.”
Many of today’s job opportunities have shifted from requiring physical effort to mostly involving sitting and working at a desk all day. However, office work isn’t the only type of occupation that requires prolonged sitting. The researchers also singled out truck drivers who are forced to sit for long periods of time.
Rosencranz has developed a plan to alleviate his own personal risk.
"I have a sit/stand workstation where in two seconds I can go from sitting to standing," he says. "I just move all of my monitors, slide it up on this thing and I can stand and work for a while and break up the periods of sitting.”
While he's found a personal solution, Rosenkranz believes health problems brought on by physical inactivity need to be addressed on a much broader scale.
“We’re going to have to realize as a society that having a lot of people sitting around all the time is a health risk and it’s going to cost us money, it’s going to cost us quality of life and we’re going to have to do something about that," he says. "And so there will be, I believe, social norm changes, cultural changes where it’s OK in a meeting to get up and stand up or stand in the back of the room, take a break from just sitting on our duffs [posteriors] all the time.”
chronic disease (n phr) 慢性病
prolonged (a) 特別長的
deadly (a) 致死的
deadly 雖是 -ly結尾，但常當形容詞用，如文中的 deadly disease (致命的疾病)。deadly 也可做副詞，但語意上跟「死」無關，用來修飾程度的「非常地、極度地」，如 deadly cold (非常的冷)，deadly wrong (大錯特錯)。
odds (n) 機會,可能性
odds當名詞表示「機會,可能性」時，要使用複數；odds and ends是常看到的片語，表示「零星雜物, 瑣碎的物品」。odd也是形容詞，是「古怪、奇怪」和「奇數的」的意思。
stair-step (a) 階梯式的
澳洲與美國的研究人員指出，長時間的 (prolonged) 坐著會增加發展出潛在致命疾病 (deadly diseases) 的可能性 (likelihood)。研究人員進一步發現，這些致命疾病跟坐著的時間呈現階梯式的上升關係 (stair step increase)。坐著的時間越長，就有越高的可能性 (higher odds)得病，糖尿病 (diabetes)尤是如此。久坐的程度越高 (at higher levels)，得高血壓 (high blood pressure)跟其它慢性病 (chronic disease)也都有提高的風險 (increased risk)。
sedentary (a) 坐著的,需要(或慣於)久坐的
alleviate (v) 減輕；緩和
vigorous (a) 精力充沛的
single out (v phr) 挑出，選出
世界衛生組織 (The World Health Organization)把每年大約 (approximately)兩百萬人的死因歸咎於 (blame . . . for . . .)久坐的生活形態 (sedentary lifestyles)，不運動 (inactivity) 則是全球造成死亡與身體殘障的十大主因 (leading causes)之一。研究也指出，即使每天早上運動三十分鐘，但在接下的八個小時 (next eight hours) 都坐在桌子前，也不會減低 (alleviate)慢性病的風險。需要久坐的職業 (occupation)除了辦公室的工作 (office work)之外，研究人員還特別指出了 (single out)卡車司機。
address (v) 解決，處理；應付
norm (n) 基準；規範
新聞裡有 “increased risk” 跟 “high risk” 兩個詞組。increased，high這兩個形容詞都可以和 risk (風險)放在一起，讀起來很自然、直接，不需要多想，所以是搭配語。要表達「高的、額外的風險」，還可以 搭 added， additional，elevated，extra；「很大的風險」可以搭配 grave，great，huge，major，serious，significant。
risk 除了上述形容詞成為搭配語，與動詞也有搭配語，例如要說「冒風險」的時候，可以選擇的動詞有 take， face， run；「形成、造成風險」可以用 carry，create，incur，involve 。risk 跟介係詞 of 也是搭配語，表達「 . . . 的風險」。回到新聞中，還可以找到幾個呢？
Check your vocabulary!
Fill in the blanks with a word or phrase from the list above. Make necessary changes. After you finish, select the text below to reveal the hidden answers.
1. How are you going to explain your prolonged absence?
2. Our products address the needs of real users.
3. They all did wrong, why single him out for punishment?
4. Heavy rains in March alleviated the drought conditions.
5. The odds are that he will commit the same crime again.
6. He was a chronic alcoholic and unable to hold down a job.
新聞裡的 risk 搭配語
to alleviate the risk of . . . 降低、減少 . . . 的風險
personal risk 個人的風險
a health risk 健康的危害，潛在的健康危機