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Is Sitting the New Smoking?

Is Sitting the New Smoking?

How to Work Standing into Your Workday

The American Cancer Society conducted a 13-year study, which concluded that sitting for more than six hours a day leads to early mortality. “Sitting disease” is a key risk factor for heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes.

Here are just a few of the benefits of standing:

  • It burns calories.
  • It improves posture.
  • It increases your ability to process information by 5-20 percent.
  • It decreases stiffness.
  • It increases metabolism.
  • It increases blood flow and oxygen to the brain by 10-15 percent.

Prolonged standing can cause pain in the hips, low back, legs and feet, joint damage, varicose veins, blood clots and stroke. So what’s the answer? Try to cut your sitting time in half each day. The goal is to encourage movement.

Also, be sure to listen to your body – if it feels fatigued, switch positions. Keep sensible shoes in mind – consider more comfortable footwear and limiting time in high heels. If switching to a sit/stand work station, gradually rotate from sitting to standing at first. Stand when you can, sit when you need to. Establish a healthy blend of both.

5 ways to decrease sitting time at work

1. Have standing or walking meetings. These tend to end sooner because people are more focused and energized.

2. Stand when speaking to coworkers at your desk and when on the phone.

3. Start using a rest room that is farther away from the one you normally use.

4. Re-map your computer to a printer in another department.

5. During presentations, stand at the back of the room.

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