Is working at a standing desk more healthy than working at a regular sitting desk?
- Source: Crackberry Blog
Over the past couple of years there has been a lot of buzz about the health benefits of standing desks, driven by research that concluded the longer you sit, the shorter your life is (all other things being equal). I don't pay too much attention to research as I know it can be argued and manipulated pretty much any and every which way you want, but as someone who's been working at a desk daily since graduating university in 2004, the notion of being a little more active and vertical during the work day intuitively made sense.
- Source: Art of Manliness Blog
Excessive sitting is slowly killing you. I know. It seems like hyperbole. But it’s not. A study found that men who sit for more than six hours of their leisure time each day had a 20% higher death rate than those who sat for three hours or less. The epidemiologist who conducted the study, Alpha Patel, concluded that excessive sitting literally shortens a person’s life by several years. Another study showed that men who sat for 23 or more hours a week had a 64% greater chance of dying from heart disease than those who sat for 11 hours per week or less.
When you sit, the electrical activity in your muscles flat lines, and your body uses very little energy. Powering down your body like that for long periods of time leads to a cascade of negative effects. Your heart rate, calorie burn, insulin effectiveness, and levels of good cholesterol all drop. Your body also stops producing lipoprotein lipase and other molecules that are only released when you flex your muscles, such as when you are standing and walking. These molecules play an important role in processing fats and sugars; without them, your metabolism suffers. Add these factors up, and it’s no wonder that those who sit for long periods of time each day have larger waistlines and worse blood sugar and blood pressure profiles and are at higher risk of heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and cancer than who sit less.