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Is standing at your desk better than sitting?

REPS PIC04aYou may not view your lifestyle as sedentary, however a combination of driving, sitting for periods of time at work or at home as well as sleeping, means that most people are off their feet for up to 21 hours each day.

A recent study found that the world’s population could increase their life expectancy by two years if they reduce the amount of time spent sitting to less than three hours a day. Also another 1.38 years can be added by reducing television viewing to less than two hours a day. By sitting less you can live up to 3.38 years longer. The health benefits from sitting less are clear to see; those who sit for five or more hours in a working day have an increased risk of up to 34% for having heart failure than those who stand up more. Other risks include diabetes, depression and even cancer.

Since 1950, sedentary jobs have risen by 83% and most office workers get less than an hour of exercise a week. With this, obesity, heart disease and many variants of cancer have also risen, and could be attributed to a lack of movement each day.

One way that has been highlighted to tackle this is the use of a standing desk, such as the Varidesk,

which allows you to quickly lift and lower your workstation. This in turn enables workers to get in to a routine of standing to work for as little as 15 minutes for every hour seated. There are now even free apps available that remind employees to stand. You can burn an additional 30 calories per day, just by standing 15 minutes per hour. Interestingly, people who use standing desks have higher productivity, by up to 12%.

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