A Jersey fitness and nutrition expert decries our sedentary lifestyle, which seems to be getting worse and slowly eroding everyone's health.

New Jersey Dietician and Exercise Physiologist Dr. Felicia Stoler says sedentary living and physical inactivity has become "the new smoking."

Humans were designed to move, and we spend a lot more time sitting down, on our rear ends, instead of being physically active. So that has decreased our longevity, and it impacts our overall health — things like obesity, Type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Diseases of aging, for the most part, are related to lifestyle habits and behaviors, Stoler said.

Stoler said this inactivity is especially chronic among office workers and those who sit at a job for hours on end. And our fascination with smartphones and tablets enhances the inactivity.

"It contributes to it. But unfortunately, I think that the other major contributing factor is the way our communities are designed," Stoler said. "and we are just not designed to allow for more movement or safe movement for that matter. We are not in an area where there are bike lanes, so people can bike to work or walk to school. A lot of school districts have busing, because they do not have safe routes to school."

To counteract this, she says, consider walking meetings, instead of time in conference room. Standing desks can help. So can taking the stairs.

"I would just really encourage people to really walk and move as much as they can," Stoer said.

Joe Cutter is the afternoon news anchor on New Jersey 101.5

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