Epidemiological evidence indicates that excessive time spent in sedentary behaviours (too much sitting) is associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes (T2D). Here, we highlight findings of experimental studies corroborating and extending the epidemiological evidence and showing the potential benefits for T2D of reducing and breaking up sitting time across the whole day. We also discuss future research opportunities and consider emerging implications for T2D prevention and management. This new evidence is stimulating an expansion of diabetes-related physical activity guidelines-suggesting that in addition to moderate-vigorous physical activity, reducing and regularly interrupting prolonged sitting time is likely to have important and varied benefits across the spectrum of diabetes risk.
Keywords: Breaks in sedentary time; Cardiometabolic risk; Cardiovascular; Diabetes; Exercise; Glycaemic control; Insulin resistance; Metabolic syndrome; Physical activity; Prediabetes; Sedentary behaviour; Sitting.