Stand up for health
There’s something you do automatically every day that poses a grave danger to your health. Here’s a hint: It isn’t working too much or not getting enough sleep, although burning the candle at both ends certainly doesn’t help. It’s sitting for more than three hours a day, whether at work or when relaxing at home.
THE SEDENTARY LIFESTYLE LIE
Most of us know that daily activity is important – and it is. But the lingering effect of a sedentary lifestyle is grossly underestimated in the health community. We are told to move our bodies for up to an hour a day to reduce the risk of chronic disease. And while no one is disputing the prolonged benefits of daily exercise, we are forgetting the largest piece of the pie:
What really matters is how we treat our bodies the remaining 23 hours of the day. Standing may be just as important as the daily exercise you get. When British Medical Journal researchers analyzed data collected from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) in 2005-2006 and 2009-2010, the results were clear. Cutting back on the amount of time spent sitting to less than three hours a day could increase life expectancy by an additional two years.1 Reducing TV time to less than two hours a day could also extend lifespan by up to 1.4 years. In 2015, University of Sydney researchers confirmed that swapping just an hour of sitting a day for standing could reduce premature death by 5 percent, based on a study of over 200,000 Australians.2
And yet, sitting is a daily activity that remains ingrained in most Western cultures, even in the most “walkable” of cities like New York. While New Yorkers may be more physically active than other adults, they still sit for far longer than is recommended each day, according to research published in the journal Preventing Chronic Disease.3 New Yorkers with higher incomes sit for up to 8.2 hours per day.
If this research tells us anything, it’s that we’re not being told the full truth. We are instructed to exercise daily without being reminded that sitting is a primary risk factor most people overlook. Sitting for longer than three hours in any one day can endanger your health. Lying down, standing, and walking are all healthier options than sitting.
THE SITTING SOLUTION IS SIMPLE
Sitting may be a major global issue, but it has an obvious solution that is easy to achieve: Stand up whenever possible. Walking is a beneficial daily activity, but it still can’t negate the bad effects of sitting all day long.
Your time spent standing may be a direct predictor of your future health.
University Health Network researchers estimate that more than half of a person’s day is spent being sedentary, whether working at a computer or watching TV. Even when the health benefits of daily physical activity are taken into account, daily exercise alone may not be enough to reduce the risk of chronic disease, says Dr. David Alter, senior scientist, senior study author, and Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Toronto. The amount of time spent sitting each day is directly associated with a higher risk of diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and death, regardless of how much you exercise.4
You can use two helpful tips to reduce sitting time to no more than three hours a day:
1. Stand up. Western workplaces have been introducing standing desks for a reason – standing desks are known to improve focus and productivity, while reducing the risk of obesity and chronic disease.5 Standing desks are an antidote to all-day sitting in offices and schools. If standing desks aren’t available, try to stand whenever you can during working hours and avoid sitting for long stretches when relaxing at home.
2. Walk. Walking may be secondary to standing when it comes to long-term health, but the benefits of daily activity can’t be underestimated. Walking provides an ideal way to squeeze in exercise when performing daily tasks and to counter the effects of sitting, at work and at home. Walking for children is especially important: The Endocrine Society discovered that when kids took three- minute walking breaks during TV time or another sedentary activity, blood sugar levels improved compared to prolonged sitting.6 Try taking walking breaks at work or as a family, with a goal to walk for at least 60 minutes over the day.
If physical activity is painful for you, sitting isn’t your only option. You can find relief for a bad back or bad knees that may make it difficult to stand for a long period of time with an at-home electro- acupressure device. In a major study conducted on 570 patients, acupuncture was proven effective to relieve pain
and improve movement in patients with osteoarthritis of the knee.7
Electro-acupressure is an acupuncture technology that can provide the same pain relief at home, without professional training or the use of needles. When electro-acupressure is used alongside targeted nutrients, like the anti- inflammatory enzyme Serrapeptase known to ease swelling and the critical mineral magnesium known to improve joint mobility, you can restore health and reap the rewards of standing.
Sitting is one major health risk that has a quick fix: Stand up for your health, and you may live a longer and fuller life.
The world’s strongest Serrapeptase delivering 250,000IU Serrapeptase per cap. For serious health support.
Become a master of acupuncture but without needles! Developed over 14 years with a leading specialists, HealthPoint can help over 160 conditions, as shown in the manual.
Unique blend of ultra pure magnesium chloride with MSM, for superior absorption. Contributes to normal energy levels and a reduction of tiredness and fatigue.
1. P. T. Katzmarzyk, I.-M. Lee. Sedentary behaviour and life expectancy in the USA: a cause-deleted life table analysis. BMJ Open, 2012; 2 (4): e000828 DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2012-000828.
2. Emmanuel Stamatakis, Kris Rogers, Ding Ding, David Berrigan, Josephine Chau, Mark Hamer, Adrian Bauman. All-cause mortality effects of replacing sedentary time with physical activity and sleeping
using an isotemporal substitution model: a prospective study of 201,129 mid-aged and older adults. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 2015; 12 (1) DOI: 10.1186/s12966- 015-0280-7.
3. NYU Langone Medical Center / New York University School of Medicine. “Amount of time New Yorkers spend sitting around far exceeds healthy levels.” ScienceDaily.
4. Aviroop Biswas, Paul I. Oh, Guy E. Faulkner, Ravi R. Bajaj, Michael A. Silver, Marc S. Mitchell, and David A. Alter. Sedentary Time and Its Association With Risk for Disease Incidence, Mortality, and Hospitalization
in Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Annals of Internal Medicine, 2015 DOI: 10.7326/M14- 1651.
5. Marianela Dornhecker, Jamilia J. Blake, Mark Benden, Hongwei Zhao, Monica Wendel. The effect of stand-biased desks on academic engagement: an exploratory study. International Journal of Health Promotion and Education, 2015; 1 DOI: 10.1080/14635240.2015.1029641.
6. Britni R. Belcher, David Berrigan, Alexia Papachrisotopoulou, Sheila M. Brady, Shanna B. Bernstein, Robert J. Brychta, Jacob D. Hattenbach, Ira L. Tigner, Amber B. Courville, Bart E. Drinkard, Kevin P. Smith, Douglas R. Rosing, Pamela L. Wolters, Kong Y. Chen, Jack A. Yanovski. Effects of Interrupting Children’s Sedentary Behaviors With Activity on Metabolic Function: A Randomized Trial. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 2015; jc.2015-2803 DOI: 10.1210/jc.2015-2803.
7. Scharf H, Mansmann U, Streitberger K, et al. Acupuncture and knee osteoarthritis: a three-armed randomized trial. Ann Intern Med 2006;145:12-20.
8. J Hepatol. 2015 Sep 9. pii: S0168-8278(15)00473-0. doi: 10.1016/j.jhep.2015.07.010. [Epub ahead of print].