The results are in folks and they aren’t pretty. I hope you’re sitting down for this. Well actually, on second thought, why don’t you stand up for it: Chairs are the new cigarettes.
That’s right. Sitting is actually worse than smoking when it comes to health. Evidence is piling up that prolonged sitting increases the risk of developing serious illnesses like cancer, heart disease, and Type 2 diabetes. And even scarier, just like the effects of smoking, the consequences of long-term sitting are not reversible through exercise or other good health habits.
According to researchers from Toronto, this means that even if you exercise daily and are in good shape, if you spend many hours a day sitting, you might as well be smoking cigarettes . This is because prolonged sitting increases your rate of lung cancer by over 50% and the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes by 90%. On top of that, a study found that women who were inactive and sat over 6 hours a day were 94% more likely to die over a 13-year period than those who were physically active and sat less than 3 hours a day.
I bet you’re standing up now.
That’s what Clint Warren did. Back in 2008, Clint had hit rock bottom physically, mentally, and emotionally. He decided to turn his life around, quit smoking, eat a healthy diet, and get exercise. But in spite of his new healthy habits, he was still sitting for 8 hours a day as part of his job. In 2011, he read an article about the dangers of prolonged sitting, and then decided to take action by building a standing desk. He didn’t have the money to buy one, so he improvised by putting a coffee table on top of his work desk. It looked a little funny, but it did the trick. Over time, he lost more weight, had more energy and focus, and developed better posture. Best of all, he felt a sense of satisfaction at the end of the day, when he could finally sit down and rest.
And Clint is not the only one standing up for his own health. Growing numbers of people around the world are starting to use standing desks and even treadmill desks. In addition, some companies are even offering their employees the option of using a standing desk. In fact, Denmark just became the first country to make the workplace choice between a sitting and standing desk mandatory.
So the evidence is overwhelming: sitting kills.
Want to try a standing desk? It’s easy. Just put your computer monitor on a stack of books, and your keyboard on a box and you’re ready to go.