Monday, June 27, 2011

Sitting Can Kill You

I have an office job, which means most days I spend 8 to 10 hours in a desk chair - either at my desk of in a conference room. While I have lost 70 lbs in the last few years, which is sure to add to my life expectancy, it turns out my sit-down job may be undoing all of my hard work. Apparently, sitting is almost as bad as smoking... from a statistical standpoint, anyway.

In particular, the American Cancer Society study finds that women who sit for more than six hours a day were about 40% more likely to die during the course of the study than those who sat fewer than three hours per day. Men were about 20% more likely to die.

That large study focused on the numbers of people who died. Other studies have focused on specific conditions affecting the most Americans, things such as cardiovascular disease, obesity, type 2 diabetes and depression. In those studies, too, extended periods of sitting increased risks of illness.
I used to work with a man who brought his own desk to work, so he could stand all day while working. At the time, I thought he was crazy. Now, I wonder if he wasn't a genius ahead of his time.

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