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Sitting More Hours Than You Sleep? Health Implications

Jodi Jan 23, 2016

The human body is not designed to sit for extended periods, and thus, sitting can have lots of deleterious effects on your body, even if you work out on a regular basis.  Many of us have desk jobs and sitting more hours even than we sleep each night is commonplace and not questioned.  However, as the amount of sitting has increased with the rise of the "thought worker" and leisure hours increasingly spent in front of a screen, we're seeing an increase in negative consequences of this sedentary lifestyle.  Most of us sit over 9 hours each day - longer even than we spend sleeping.  Here are a few of the downsides to lots of sitting:

  • electrical activity in the legs shuts down
  • calorie burning drops to 1 calorie per minute
  • enzymes that break down fat drop 90%

Obese people sit 2.5 hours more each day than thin people.  Are you sitting too much?

  • Are your hips stiff when you get up?
  • Do you have low back pain?
  • Do you routinely sit for more than 2 hours at a crack?

If you have a desk job like me, there are a bunch of things you can do to counteract the effects of long stretches parked in front of a screen:

  • Get up and stretch at your desk periodically...and this feels great!
  • Drink lots of water...enjoy the added benefit of lots of walks to the restroom
  • Take the stairs
  • Cut your tv viewing by an hour...go for a walk
  • Try a treadmill desk

A few small changes throughout the day will add up.  Create a few new habits and then add from there.  Massage therapy can help address the pains accumulated from many screen hours and any you experience as you adjust to your new habits.  Let's get moving!

 

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