Many of us live a pretty sedentary lifestyle. We rely on cars to get from point A to point B. We spend hours sitting at our desks, and at home, we usually sit to watch TV or eat our dinners. In short, we’re sitting a lot. And a new study reveals that desk job can increase our risk for injuring heart muscles.

Sitting too much (more than nine to 10 hours per day) can make us more susceptible to heart disease, diabetes and heart failure – even if we do exercise. That’s because our heart becomes increasingly weak and unable to keep up with our level of exertion.

In the study conducted by the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, researchers examined something called troponin and its relationship with the sedentary lifestyle.

You might be wondering what troponin are. So, here’s a quick explanation. Troponins are proteins which the cardiac muscle cells produce when they’re damaged or dying. Therefore having high amounts of troponin in the blood stream suggest an unhealthy heart.

The researchers compared more than 1,700 participants. They found that in those people who sat for an average of 10 hours per day and didn’t exercise much were more likely to have unhealthy troponin levels.

Even though the troponin levels were too low to indicate a heart attack, they were still high enough to be considered a subclinical cardiac injury.

More research is necessary to understand the relationship between the sedentary lifestyle and troponin. However, researchers hold that an increase in movement and less sitting to support a healthy cardiovascular system.

If sitting makes up a large part of your day, consider adding more movement wherever you can to keep your heart healthy and happy.