Recently an Australian research firm has found a connection between sitting at a desk over the long-term and the hazard of developing bowel cancer. The 2-year study looked at more than 2000 people between the ages of 40 and 79.
The findings were that those people who worked for 10 ears or more sitting at a desk had almost TWICE the risk of distal colon cancer. The study also showed a 44 percent increase of risk of getting rectal cancer. Distal colon cancer is on the left side of the colon; rectal cancer is at the end of the large intestine.
The study found that it didn't matter how much physical activity the workers did outside of work. It was the fact that they remained sedentary and sitting at a desk for most of the day.
It's a very scary-sounding set of statistics, but there are some very simple ways to counteract the effects of being sedentary for 8+ hours a day.
We've outlined many of these on this blog in the past. One of them was N.E.A.T. activites, or "non-exercise activity thermogenesis". This is the combined result of movements that happen in the course of your day that can help your health and help burn calories.
NEAT activities include things like nervous fidgeting, walking around the office, pacing, and simply standing at a stand up desk while working.
While standing it may appear that you're not really doing anything; that no muscles are being used and no calories being burned. But the truth is quite different: standing works lots of lower torso muscles and requires the body to burn calories.
Plus, standing is much better than sitting. Sitting is somewhat an uncomfortable position - not that it feels uncomfortable to us, but it's not natural for our body and internal organs. When you're standing, nothing is being compressed or crushed or otherwise pushed into an odd position.
Of course, everything in moderation. Standing for 8-12 hours a row in a single day can lead to adverse effects in your feets and legs. You should take a break every 3-4 hours to let your body rest up a bit, for at least 15 minutes or so at a time.
But standing can have profound positive impacts on your health, and this is why we're such active proponents of it! So check out our adjustable height desks, read our testimonials, and dig through our other blog posts. We think you'll benefit greatly by using a stand-up desk for stretches while you work.