Sitting is a new norm. The digital world dictates that we sit down almost the whole day. Whether driving, watching a movie, or attending a lecture, sitting is something we constantly do. Human bodies cannot tolerate long periods of sitting. Hence, prolonged periods of sitting are associated with various health issues.
Effects of Sitting Too Long
It Increases the Risk of Deep Vein Thrombosis
Sitting for prolonged periods without standing can predispose one to a condition known as deep vein thrombosis (DVT). Many studies have linked DVT to prolonged periods of sitting or bed rest.
Deep vein thrombosis is a venous thromboembolic event where a blood clot forms spontaneously in the body. One of the common causes is blood stasis. Blood flow is reduced when a person sits for long. The clot may dislodge and be carried in the blood vessels to a distant site, a process known as embolization. If the embolus lodges in essential organs like the lungs, heart, and brain, it can lead to organ failure or stroke.
It Leads to Back Problems
Prolonged periods of sitting can adversely affect your back. Even though you may be using an ergonomic chair, it is still harmful to sit continuously for long periods. Besides affecting the back muscles, prolonged sitting can affect the spine. Therefore, it is good to protect your spine by breaking sitting sessions by periodically standing or walking. Additionally, you can do what Georgians do and visit a spine doctor in Tucker, Georgia for more consultation on spine health.
It is Harmful to the Heart
Even with occasional exercises, sitting for prolonged periods is unhealthy and negatively impacts the heart. Various studies have been conducted on the effect of prolonged sitting. The studies found out that excessive sitting can lead to heart complications. One of the major complications is heart or cardiac failure. Cardiac failure is a medical condition where the heart cannot pump sufficient blood to meet the body’s needs. Failure to meet the oxygen and nutritional requirements of the body results in an array of symptoms.
While seated, blood flow through the body is slowed. Therefore, it is likely that boredom and reduced concentration result from reduced blood flow to the brain. When a healthy heart pumps harder, it gets stronger and healthier. Keeping the heart dormant by sitting all day long is detrimental. A person might want to consider compression socks when sitting for a long time. This is just one idea.
It Causes Obesity
Physical inactivity, including prolonged sitting, interferes with fat metabolism. For instance, when you sit down for long, the levels of lipoprotein lipase decrease. The lipoprotein lipase enzyme metabolizes lipids in the body. Accumulation of lipids can lead to obesity and other diseases. In many cases, people who are overweight become obese with time.
Obesity predisposes one to many diseases. Diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and dyslipidemia have been linked to obesity. Therefore, it is correct to infer that sitting down for long predisposes one to diseases associated with obesity.
It Increases the Risk of Cancer Mortality
One of the worst effects of sitting for long is that it increases the mortality risk of cancer. Interesting research covered by an article published by the New York Times highlighted the link between cancer deaths and sitting for long.
The study revealed the dangers of sitting for long or being inactive most time in a day. On the other hand, the scientists involved in the study suggested that gentle strolling, walking, gardening, among other light activities, can lower the risk. Besides, they worked out a model for prevention. The model suggested that a 30-minutes exercise reduces the risk significantly. Nobody would like to have cancer, let alone dying. Hence, it would be best if you detest inactivity.
Point of Action
Exercise is paramount. Rather than sitting all day long, you can take breaks after some intervals to do some exercise. It is paramount to adopt some light-intensity exercising measures at the workplace so as to counter or prevent the effects of sitting for long periods. Some of the simple measures to adopt in the workplace include:
- Strolling around or in the office
- Using the stairs
- Walking to your colleague’s office rather than calling them
- Parking at a relatively far place
- Use a convertible desk or a standing desk
- Set a reminder on your phone or computer to remind you after every one hour or thirty minutes to stand or move
- Adopt good sitting postures
- Purchase an ergonomic chair
- Use compression socks
In the evening or morning, while at home, you can reduce the time you sit by:
- Walking to buy groceries
- Strolling around your living room
- Preparing and washing dishes
- Engaging in aerobic sports
- Cutting down the time spent on TV and movies
Sitting for long periods is detrimental to health. Therefore, reducing the periods you sit will benefit you. Even though office work or school work demands a comfortable position like sitting, it is possible to cut down sitting time. Try exercising regularly while at home and strolling while at work.
This post has been sponsored by Leelija Web Solutions Private Limited
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