Have you ever calculated just how many hours a day you are sitting? It can be a scary thing to do! Between work, commuting, meals and TV time, the average Canadian spends close to 10 hours a day sitting.
A paper published by Annals of Internal Medicine indicated that being sedentary for a prolonged period of time was associated with a 15 to 20 per cent higher risk of death from any cause; a 15 to 20 per cent higher risk of heart disease, death from heart disease, cancer, death from cancer; and as much as a 90 per cent increased risk of developing diabetes. It’s no wonder we’re hearing that sitting is the new smoking!
The Impact of Sitting on Your Back & Joints
Prolonged sitting, especially with incorrect posture, can put extra pressure on your low back and stress the surrounding muscles and joints, leading to lower back pain. Furthermore, crossing your legs for long periods of time can put increased pressure and pain on your knees. Yoga and stretching is incredibly beneficial to mitigate against poor posture and subsequent joint and back pain, as can making a point of standing up more often.
Easy Tips to Stand Up More Often
Given that sitting is the new smoking, this begs the question, how can you stand up more and sit less, especially if you work in an office job?
- Request a standing desk in your office, or make your own. A standing desk doesn’t have to be fancy; rather, if you use a laptop, you could simply stack it on some boxes or big books on your desk. Even just switching to standing for a couple of hours each day will make a difference.
- Book walking meetings. If you are meeting with less than four people, go for a walk instead of booking a conference room. Walking meetings are actually proven to get the creative juices flowing, too. If a walking meeting isn’t feasible, simply move the chairs to one side of the boardroom and have everyone stand for part or all of the meeting.
- Set reminders for yourself to get up once an hour and walk around for five minutes or so. Sometimes, it’s as simple as reminding yourself to get up. You’ll notice benefits for your energy too when you do this.
- Put your headphones in and take a conference call on a walk. This does depend on where you’re walking as sirens and car horns could be distracting, but if you have the option to walk somewhere outdoors in a quieter area, this is a great way to get moving during a meeting.
Take Your Joint Health to the Next Level
If you’ve noticed that sitting has had an impact on your joint health, I recommend you include Genuine Health’s fast joint care+ in your daily routine. It provides fast, effective relief from joint pain and inflammation naturally, through its patented ingredient BiovaFlex®. BiovaFlex® is derived from egg shells and contains collagen, elastin and transforming growth factor – all ingredients that work to reduce inflammation and build cartilage strength.