While not necessarily a diagnosable disease, sitting disease proves to cause some negative effects in the lives of those who sit for most of the day. Think about it—every night we lay down to fall asleep. Then, we wake up and most people head to work where they sit for the majority of the time at a desk or conference room table. After work, it is usually common practice to relax and decompress, most likely through sitting.
Most activities in our modern life involve sitting. Even if you work out, you still cannot compensate for hours and hours of little to no physical activity. So, what are some things to avoid the so-called “sitting disease” and enhance your health?
What Is Sitting Disease?
The term “sitting disease” is the reference the scientific community makes to the harmful effects incurred by people who regularly spend their time sitting. Though at first glance, sitting for too long does not seem completely horrible, the American Cancer Society found in a study that women who sat for more than six hours per day were 94 percent more likely to die. For men, they were 48 percent more likely.
Technology does not make it any easier for us to avoid sitting too. As humans, we are more likely to work at a desk or any sitting position while we use our smart technology.
Why Is Sitting Disease Bad for Your Health?
As a species, human beings have walked and stood through their labor and their leisure. It was not until the modern-day, with more desk jobs and the like, when sitting became so commonplace. Humans need to be active to maintain their health. The opposite of activity would only mean poor health.
What Are Some Sitting Disease Symptoms?
Sitting disease is dangerous. However, it is much sneakier in its effects. You don’t become ill in health after sitting down for an hour—or even hours on end for a few days in a row. The negative effects slowly creep up on you, which could make the disease all the more threatening.
Some sitting disease symptoms include:
- Poor posture
- Increased chance of obesity
- Increased chance of diabetes
- Increased chance of cardiovascular disease
There are many more diseases that can be attributed to the disease. Plus, it promotes poor posture, which can lead to many more issues like muscle pain, weakened shoulders, and pressure on the disks in your back.
How to Beat Sitting Disease
Though sitting disease poses some scary symptoms, the good news is that you can combat all its negative effects. The best way to beat the sitting disease is, of course, through standing!
We get that standing through the entire day may not be completely possible, but there are some simple solutions. If you absolutely cannot stand for very long, try improving your posture. Be mindful of how you sit and how straight your back is. Keep your shoulders back, core engaged, and if looking at a screen, keep your head facing straight rather than down.
Besides sleeping, you probably spend most of your day at work. You can make your work environment more ergonomic so that you can beat sitting disease. A standing desk is a great tool for you to stay productive all while fighting back against the silent and deadly disease.
Pros and Cons of Standing Desk
- Help you beat sitting disease
- May reduce back pain
- Can boost your productivity
- May boost your mood while working
- More expensive than a sitting desk
- You cannot stand for too long
Why Standing Desks Can Help You Avoid the Disease from Sitting too Long
Despite the cons, there are plenty of benefits of a standing desk home office for it to be valuable and useful. If the cost is the aspect that deters you from this healthy alternative to sitting, you can simply purchase the cheaper alternative—a standing desk base.
Standing at work is a great way to combat sitting disease, you cannot stand for too long—especially on the first use of your standing desk. As a way to productively keep track of your sit stand session and save your feet from a world of hurt, use a sitting time calculator. That way, you can keep track of your sitting to standing ratio while also monitoring your health.
How to Properly Use a Standing Desk
A standing desk is great for your health. However, you should not jump into it fully without testing the waters. If you decide to go your first day standing the entire time, your feet and back are going to make you regret it, thus defeating the purpose of your new standing desk.
The very first day of using a standing desk, you should set it up and ensure that it coincides with the instructions. Then, time yourself for about an hour and try standing in that period. Take breaks or stop yourself at any time you feel weak, sore, or in pain. It is best to ease yourself into the standing routine. Don’t worry, your body can adjust and get more comfortable standing for longer over time.
Once you feel comfortable with your standing desk, you still probably should not stand for an entire day. Standing in place for hours on end can take a toll on your body. Be sure to give your body breaks by sitting down or taking a quick walk. Pushing through the day can only mean more pain at the end of the day.
The Bottom Line
Sitting disease is not necessarily a diagnosable disease, but it can be the cause of a multitude of health problems. Really, the only way to combat sitting disease is through standing. However, with a modern lifestyle, this can be difficult, and a standing desk is a great solution. The health benefits of a standing desk are plentiful and directly fight sitting disease. Plus, they promote an ergonomic office space and can even help you stay productive through the workday.
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