I’ve enjoyed this series for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the way that Travis Saunders has been willing to discuss the flaws and holes in the research and the need to think differently in ways that help to fill in those holes. This is a great example of how science works.
From Obesity Panacea:
However, regardless of the findings of the studies that are currently ongoing, there is a need for many more studies in this emerging field. With this in mind, I thought it would be worth pointing out a number of important issues and possible directions for future research, should anyone feel inclined to take the advice of a lowly grad student working in this area. Here are some of the issues that I feel are important to consider, in no particular order (as always, I’d love to hear other suggestions in the comments!):
Think twice before you define an individual as “sedentary;”
Don’t just ask about sedentary behaviour – measure it directly;
We need more lab-based studies; and
We need a better understanding of the determinants of sedentary behaviour.
From all of this I’m conducting my own experiment. For the month of February I’m spending my coffeehouse time at high-top tables and counters. I’ll let you know what I find.