Couch Potatoes: What Can Long Hours of Sitting Do To You?

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You have might heard of the phrase “sitting is the new smoking”, but what does it mean? The phrase acknowledges that a sedentary lifestyle that includes sitting at a desk all day is detrimental to your health in the long run.

It’s true—studies have linked long hours of sitting to high blood pressure, neck and back pain, weight gain and cardiovascular diseases. In fact, a study has shown that sitting for prolonged hours—either in spurts or continuous bouts—can contribute to an increased risk of early death. 

You might think that you can make up for all that sitting around at your desk job by going for a run after leaving the office. The exercise should be able to cancel out the adverse health effects of spending eight hours in a chair, right?

Wrong, according to an advisory from the American Heart Association. The cardiologists concluded that no amount of physical activity can combat the negative health effects of a sedentary lifestyle. 

sittingHere is what happens to your body when you spend such a significant time in the chair:

Bad posture

Most people don’t realize that sitting for too long every day can permanently damage their intervertebral discs and in turn, lead to bad posture. Sitting for hours on end puts constant and immense pressure on the joints, tendons and back; this can further lead to muscular imbalance and improper body alignment. 

Obesity

Obesity remains one of the most common global diseases. While sometimes it’s genetic, most often, obesity is caused by our sedentary lifestyles. Sitting for long duration means that you’re generally inactive and your body is using less energy; this results in fewer calories burnt and a significant amount of weight gain—not to mention a higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes

Blood circulation problems

Although symptoms of blood circulation problems barely show at early stages, they can cause serious health damage over a long period of time. Sitting affects blood circulation, particularly in the lower limb and pelvic area. In order to ensure that sufficient amount of blood is carried to all the organs, simple exercises like walking periodically in between long office hours can help.

Slow blood flow increases the chances of developing cardiovascular problems, which could be anything from blood clotting and high cholesterol levels to a stroke.

long desk

So, once you are aware of the problem, what can you do to improve your lifestyle and take better control of your overall health? Our recommendation is to invest in a standing desk if you have a desk job. A standing desk allows you to comfortably stand while working. They are height-adjustable and customized to your body type, allowing you to reap the benefits of switching between standing and sitting. What’s more is that standing desks have shown to improve energy levels, reduce back pain and risk of heart diseases

If you’re ready for a happier and healthier you, browse through our collection of adjustable standing desks, sit-stand hydraulic executive chairs, and more! We also offer custom-made stand up work benches and treadmill desks

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