It might be time to mount your TV higher up on the wall and burn the sofa outside on the pavement, as researchers have linked too much of the old "sitting down" with a rise in premature deaths.

A joint team from from Queen's University Belfast and Ulster University says it thinks 11.6 per cent of premature deaths in 2016 were triggered by people and their terrible sedentary lifestyles, which amounts to 69,276 people passing away from committing no greater health crime than staying sat down for more than six hours a day.

Don't panic if your job is sitting here looking at screens all day, mind, as the problem arises most in people whose leisure time is taken up by sitting down in front of screens too.

But you maybe do want to think about starting to panic if your way of unwinding after a day of enforced sitting and staring at a screen is to stare at a screen of a different resolution in a slightly different seated position until bed time, and your only exercise is reaching over to get the piss bottle and gesturing at politicians.

The report summarises its doom with: "Many individuals in the UK spend their leisure time in sedentary behaviour, and the workplace represents a significant proportion of unavoidable daily sitting time for many people.

Measures should be taken to reduce sedentary behaviour with the aim of improving population health and reducing the financial burden to the health service."

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