We all know sitting for long hours is unhealthy and disastrous to our health. It turns out that physically, sitting all day may be just as bad as being on your feet. Scientists say sitting is the new smoking and is more treacherous than parachuting. But what exactly goes wrong when we park ourselves at our desks for significantly long hours?
1. Organ Damage
When you sit for a long duration, your muscles tend to burn less fat and your blood flow is also decreased. And when your blood flows slowly, it allows fatty acids to clog your heart. Studies show that sitting is linked to high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, and cardiovascular disease. In addition, your pancreas may over produce insulin, which can lead to diabetes, and studies have linked sitting to a greater risk of developing colon, breast, and endometrial cancers.
2. Muscle Degeneration
Your abdominal muscles are tensed and tightened when you’re standing as opposed to when you’re sitting. When you sit, your muscles are loose and go unused thereby weakening your midsection. Sitting can also impact the mobility of your hips and the strength of your glutes. Sitting in a chair all day will make your hips tight with a more limited degree of motion because they are rarely extended. Soft glutes hurt your stability, your ability to push off and your ability to maintain a powerful stride.
3. Weight Gain
This is an obvious disadvantage of sitting for hours. Sitting for long hours also takes a beating to your posture. People who sit for nine or more hours have a weak waistline and tend to be more prone to obesity. It is known that obese people typically sit for two and a half hours more than thin people.
4. Leg Disorders
Sitting for long periods of time slows blood circulation, causing fluid to pool in the legs. Problems such as swollen ankles, varicose veins, and dangerous blood clots called deep vein thrombosis (DVT) are a result of sitting for a long time. Weight-bearing activities such as walking and running stimulate hip and lower-body bones to grow thicker, denser and stronger.
5. Back And Neck Pain
One of the most common issues faced by people who sit for long hours is back and neck pain. Cradling a phone to your ear and jutting your neck and head forward while working at a computer can cause strain in your cervical vertebrae thereby leading to neck strain, sore shoulders, and back pain. The very act of sitting adds pressure on your spine and compresses the disks that make up your back.