» October 25, 2015

Daily Archives: October 25, 2015

Prolonged Sitting

Too Much Sitting Can Kill You

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There is a lot of talk right now about the disadvantages of sitting, whether at a desk, in a car or in front of the television, for extended periods of time. Sluggishness is just one of the many symptoms pointed out in this graphic from The Washington Post. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/special/health/sitting/Sitting.pdf A few of the other considerations are degeneration of various muscle groups, skeletal problems in the neck, back and shoulders, poor leg circulation and possible damages to internal organs, including cancer of the colon.

If you spend enough time sitting while at work, you are likely to suffer from at least some “brain fog.” This means that you will be under-achieving and will accomplish less work. As an employee, this might mean you will be overlooked for promotions and you will get smaller raises. If you are a business owner, you can probably guess what a few hours of lower productivity for yourself or your employees might do to your bottom line.
Now let’s get to the title of this article, ” Too Much Sitting Can Kill You.” This article from Harvard Health Publications http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/much-sitting-linked-heart-disease-diabetes-premature-death-201501227618 points out that all the sitting we do every day ” could be sending us to an early grave.” Higher risk of cardiovascular problems, type 2 diabetes, cancer and even a greater possibility of suffering from dementia have all been linked to inactivity, and specifically to sitting too much.

Even if you are working in a job that is traditionally sedentary, there are lots of things you can do to make some small improvements in your activity. Rather than phoning or emailing a colleague, walk to their office for a brief chat. Drink plenty of fluids, particularly water. Not only will you have a reason to go to the water cooler, but you will also need to get up to go to the washroom more often. Don’t worry about the extra breaks. You will actually accomplish more because each of these interruptions will allow you to return to work more energized. You might try standing while on the phone.

Perhaps the best solution is to find a way to do most of your work while standing up. This is where the standing desk or even the treadmill desk comes in. But this is the subject of another story.