CBT-I Benefits Go Beyond the ‘I’

New research finds cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia alleviates other conditions as well.
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Unpacking a Citrus-Melanoma Link

The association between citrus fruit and melanoma should be carefully interpreted.
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When Antibiotics Work…And Don’t

Both patients and healthcare givers can have misperceptions about antibiotics.
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Reflections On An All-Day Walk
By Jeff Venables

Some observations on a day spent “urban hiking.”
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Visiting Nature For Mental Health

Time spent in verdant, natural spaces positively affects the way our brains work.
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Another Trial For Glucosamine

The popular supplement may offer reductions in joint space narrowing; pain, not so much.
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The Clinic

Alternatives to Performance Gels
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How Feet React to Warm Climates
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Water Running for OA
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Easing Back Into Running After Injury
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The Back Page

In 2015, This Is Water

XC Border War

Seen and Heard…
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A Coke Fueled Controversy

Steven N. Blair, PED, FACSM, along with his former colleagues at the Cooper Aerobics Clinic in Dallas, is responsible for groundbreaking studies that establish an extremely strong correlation between exercise and longevity.

In 1989, Dr. Blair’s seminal paper “Physical Fitness and All-Cause Mortality,” reported to the world the direct relationship between how long you will live and how fit you are by analyzing data from over 13,000 people over more than a decade. It was the one of the first times Big Data so emphatically revealed such a connection.

Now, controversy receiving significant media coverage swirls around his financial relationship to Coca-Cola, which has funded the creation of Blair’s current research group, the Global Energy Balance Network, where he serves as vice president. Last year, Coca-Cola donated $1.5 million to start the nonprofit, the New York Times reports. Records show that the network’s website, gebn.org, is registered to Coca-Cola headquarters in Atlanta, and the company is also listed as the site’s administrator.

The group has issued several bold statements and videos directing attention away from diet and toward exercise in the fight against obesity, and many health experts feel this is directly related to Coke’s public relations efforts to continue selling sugary drinks, despite abundant evidence that they contribute to the country’s obesity crisis. There are more than a few concerns that Dr. Blair might be undermining his previous important work by downplaying the role of caloric intake and dietary choices in managing body weight.

Pushing Away From The Work Desk

The sedentary office is unnatural. We spend so much of our time sitting that it's easy to forget what a recent development this is for humankind. Evidence suggests links between sedentary behavior and musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, metabolic and mental health problems. Now, health officials in the U.K. Are recommending two to four hours of activity during the workday.

According to a new consensus statement published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, workers in desk-based jobs should aim for at least two hours of standing or light walking as part of their daily routines, ultimately working up to as much as four hours per workday.

Employees should achieve this in part by regularly alternating between seat-based and standing-based work, and the public health experts strongly recommend adjustable, sit-stand desk stations. The advice is based largely on observational studies and cites among the additional benefits of moving more at work improved employee productivity and possible healthcare cost savings.

To achieve the recommended level of work-related activity, the authors write, “seated-based work should be regularly broken up with standing-based work, the use of sit-stand desks, or the taking of short active standing breaks. Along with other health promotion goals (improved nutrition, reducing alcohol, smoking and stress), companies should also promote among their staff that prolonged sitting, aggregated from work and in leisure time, may significantly and independently increase the risk of cardiometabolic diseases and premature mortality.”

Even if a person completes the recommended daily 30 minutes of exercise, the amount of time spent sitting in the day still substantially affects mortality risk. People that sit the most have a 112% increase in the relative risk (RR) of diabetes and a 147% increase in the RR of cardiovascular events compared to people who sit down the least.

Overall mortality is increased by 50%. Sitting down has similar mortality rates to smoking. It’s been shown that prolonged sitting adversely affects glucose metabolism. However, sitting with light-moderate intensity breaks can significantly reduce glucose and insulin levels.

Positive associations between cancer and sedentary behavior exist. It is thought that since sedentary behavior contributes to an interrelated network of increased body fat, altered production of sex hormones, metabolic dysfunction, leptin, adiponectin and inflammation, it encourages cancer development.

Interestingly, 18 mini-breaks from seated positions are better than having one chunk of exercise in a day to reduce blood glucose and cardiovascular disease risk. In one 2014 study, Alternating sitting and standing was comparable to uninterrupted sitting regarding plasma glucose. Sitting and light intensity activity breaks lowered subjects plasma glucose.

That study aside, standing does of course have benefits compared to sitting. However, prolonged standing can increase risk of varicose veins and musculoskeletal problems. The solution is moving: alternating standing, sitting and light walking.

In another recent large analysis published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, researchers examined data from 47 studies that assessed the health effects of sedentary behavior adjusted for physical activity. Increased exercise blunted—but did not completely eliminate—the excess risks associated with sedentary behavior. This illustrates just how serious a problem sedentarism can be, with even vigorous exercise not entirely offsetting its deleterious effects.

The challenges associated with treadmill desks—covered in the Jan/Feb issue of Running & FitNews®—make it likely that the best bet, and what the British authors seem to be suggesting, is to get up and walk around regularly at work, as well as perform as much as half of your workday tasks while standing.

Br. J. Sports Med., June 2015, http://bjsm.bmj.com/content/early/2015/04/23/bjsports-2015-094618

BJSM Blog, Stand and Deliver: Behaviour change implementation for #ActiveWorking,
Jan. 2015, http://blogs.bmj.com/bjsm/2015/01/30/stand

Annals of Int. Med., 2015, Vol. 162, No. 2

JOEM, 2014, Vol. 56, No. 12, pp. 1266-1276, http://journals.lww.com/joem/Abstract/2014/12000/Evaluation_of_a_Workplace_Treadmill_


editorial board

Kenneth Cooper, MD
Kevin Beck
Jack Daniels, PhD
Randy Eichner, MD
Mary Jo Feeney, MS, RD
Mitchell Goldflies, MD
Paul Kiell, MD
Sarah Harding Laidlaw, MS, RD
Paul Langer, DPM
Douglas Lentz, CSCS
Todd Miller, MD
Gabe Mirkin, MD
Col Francis O’Connor, MD
Stephen Perle, DC, CCSP
Pete Pfitzinger, MS
Charles L. Schulman, MD
Bruce Wilk, PT, OCS
Mel Williams, PhD
Michael Yessis, PhD
Jeff Venables, Editor

board of directors

Jeff Harbison, President
Bill Young, Secretary-Treasurer
Immediate Past-President
(Vacant) Vice President
Robert Corliss
Charles L. Schulman, MD, AMAA Pres.
AMAA President
Terry Adirim, MD, MPH
Gayle Barron
Sue Golden
Senator Bill Frist, MD
Jeff Galloway
Jeff Harbison
Ronald M. Lawrence, MD, PhD
Jeff Moore
Noel D. Nequin, MD
David Pattillo

Association Staff

Executive Director: Dave Watt
Project Consultant: Barbara Baldwin, MPH

Running & FitNews is published by the American Running Association. Address inquiries to ARA, Attention: FitNews Editor, 4405 East-West Highway., Suite 405, Bethesda, MD 20814 or send e-mail to run@americanrunning.com

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