Is sitting the new smoking? We already know that sedentary lifestyle can lead to a bunch of bad consequences. However, the list is not short and there are much more side effects of sitting.
Why is Sitting the New Smoking?
Sitting is the new smoking. Yes, it is hard to believe there is a link between sitting and smoking. However, sitting can be more dangerous than smoking. Yet, if everyone is informed about dangers of smoking, harmful side effects of sitting are not clear at the first glance.
The Dangers of Sitting are Real
Deep Vein Thrombosis
One in four deaths worldwide occurs due to thrombosis. You do not necessarily have to be over 50 or smoke more than10 cigarettes a day. You also do not have to drink a lot of alcohol or take birth control. Deep vein thrombosis is a genetic disease so look at your family history, first! Of course, there are risk factors. Sitting is one of them. According to World Thrombosis Day Movement, sitting for a long time increases risks of getting a blood cloth. So, next time you are taking a flight or a car trip, do physical activities from time to time. Taking off your shoes when sitting for a long time also improves blood circulation.
Fortunately, you can take care of many risk factors! Firstly, get to know your family history. Secondly, make a D-Dimer blood test, an MRT of a leg or arm and brain. Moreover, get to know if you have pulmonary embolism! This condition and a deep vein thrombosis create a very dangerous combination! Try to take care of your health and combine sitting and standing activities. Deep vein thrombosis is not something abstract. It can happen to anyone anytime.
According to University of California, long periods of physical inactivity lead to atrophy of some parts of brain. To be more precise, the one that is responsible for memory! And physical activity is not efficient enough to put harmful effects aside. Making small breaks is not going to help your memory! However, changing sitting and standing positions while working or studying will! So, a standing desk is the best option for you. It allows you to change between sitting and standing positions when you want. Some standing desk accessories can make your working time more productive. What else can you do? Try to do some physical activities regularly. Walking for an hour or cycling to work can be a good way to make your brain thicker. It also reduces risks of dementia.
Osteoporosis is a disease of a skeleton. Your bones just lose their density, become thick and weak. And there is no way to check if you have it or not! Yes, you can check your vitamin D, fluoride and calcium levels. However, you will never feel pain. Yet, there is a list of risk factors such as female gender, low weight, family history, thyroid hormone therapy and low physical inactivity. What you can do is to eat more! Being active on a regular basis is also very important. So, try walking instead of driving. And cycling instead of taking public transport!
Sitting for a long time has some harmful side effects such as deep vein thrombosis, dementia and osteoporosis. However, you can always take care of your health and move more! A standing desk is a great opportunity for you to do some physical activities and work simultaneously without wasting time!
- World Thrombosis Day Movement: Know Thrombosis: Think Venous Thrombosis http://www.worldthrombosisday.org/issue/vte/
- Siddarth, P., Burgren, A., Eyre, H., Small, G., Merrill, D.(2018): Sedentary behavior associated with reduced medial temporal lobe thickness in middle-aged and older adults https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0195549
- Sit and Be FiT: Osteoporosis https://www.sitandbefit.org/resources/osteoporosis/