The workplace can have a big impact on employee health and wellness. One way companies are helping employees feel better and maintain better health is by supplying desks that allow workers to stand while working at them. More and more research is showing that sitting, even for just an hour, has significant negative health consequences. Standing more at work might help with this problem. Even if you don’t have a stand-up desk, be sure to get up from your desk and move around frequently.
Excerpts from related article:
Suppose you stick to a five-times-a-week gym regimen, as I do, and have put in a lifetime of hard cardio exercise, and have a resting heart rate that’s a significant fraction below the norm. That doesn’t inoculate you, apparently, from the perils of sitting.
The research comes more from observing the health results of people’s behavior than from discovering the biological and genetic triggers that may be associated with extended sitting. Still, scientists have determined that after an hour or more of sitting, the production of enzymes that burn fat in the body declines by as much as 90 percent. Extended sitting, they add, slows the body’s metabolism of glucose and lowers the levels of good HDL cholesterol in the blood. Those are risk factors toward developing heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.
“The science is still evolving, but we believe that sitting is harmful in itself,” says Dr. Toni Yancey, a professor of health services at the University of California, Los Angeles.
Yet many of us still spend long hours each day sitting in front of a computer.
The good news is that when creative capitalism is working as it should, problems open the door to opportunity. New knowledge spreads, attitudes shift, consumer demand emerges and companies and entrepreneurs develop new products. That process is under way, addressing what might be called the sitting crisis. The results have been workstations that allow modern information workers to stand, even walk, while toiling at a keyboard.
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