Office workers need to “get off their back sides and move around more” according to a recent campaign. On Your Feet Britain has indicated that sitting for long periods at work can be linked to a host of health problems. These are sadly not addressed by working out later at the gym. The campaign is calling for people to stand regularly, walk around more and embrace ideas such as standing meetings or standing desks. Heart disease, type II diabetes, cancers and poor mental health have all been linked to sedentary behaviour. The effect is found even in people who class themselves as fit. Even those who cycle to work can be at risk if they also spend longer periods of time sitting during the day.
Inactivity is one of the biggest challenges for our health at the current time. Prolonged sitting is thought to slow down the metabolism and it affects the way the body then controls sugar levels, blood pressure and the breakdown of fat.
A British Heart Foundation survey suggested that 45% of women and 37% of men spend less than 30 minutes a day up on their feet at work and more than half regularly eat lunch at their desk. 78% of office workers felt that they spent too much time sitting down.
Get Britain Standing suggests that we need to find new ways of addressing the issue.
1 Stand up when you are on the phone or in meetings. Do everything you can to avoid sitting.
2 Use the stairs instead of the lift.
3 Eat your lunch away from your desk.
4 Walk to a colleagues desk rather than phoning or emailing them.
Clearly sitting down all day at our desk puts us at a risk to health. We all need to move more to offset the risk of health problems linked to desk bound working life.
For more information about Kate and her work, please click HERE.