Flex your muscles, shake your hips, move around and you might lose weight. One cannot be assured of weight loss even after such extensive physical routines as there are many other factors that affect our weight measures. We find ourselves entangled in the humdrum work schedules at office glued to our seats for a couple of hours together without a single break. This might seem justifiable to our hefty salary packages but what justice are we doing to our priceless body that toils tirelessly? No denial that many people nowadays regularly workout, go for a walk or do yoga as a part of their daily physical activity but the whole point here is whether this one hour of activity (on an average) is sufficient enough to maintain our health and keep us fit! We have evolved as a society where desk jobs are the day’s norm and the only people shuttling back and forth are the marketing guys, fruit/vegetable vendor and other sales persons.
Dawn to Desk
Punishments at school involve standing outside the class, kneeling down or running around the ground when some student fails to complete a given activity. Though embarrassing for the kid involved it now sounds like a solid chunk of exercise that could garner plenty of benefits. That’s because, a new study by itself approves of standing rather than sitting down while working to lose weight. While the study comes just at the right time when obesity rates are increasing more and more, there are already few companies who have incorporated this change into their workstations. That’s employee friendliness to name it! These offices have standing workstations that equip employees with provisions to stand for as long as they want and work to their heart’s content.
The link between obesity and inactivity is well-established and there are numerous studies that show that sitting too much can increase fat accumulation around internal organs, advance biological aging or shorten telomers (nucleotide sequences present at the end of chromosomes playing an active role in affecting aging process). Keeping yourself active with some exercise schedules is the appropriate way to stay fit and in a healthy weight range but how feasible is it to most of us to go to the gym every day in the morning, especially for women who are still the primary individuals who cook, clean, send children to school and go to office too? It’s far from practical for many, especially those who commute for long hours. The latest study result excites these people and makes them wonder whether something as simple as standing can help one lose weight.
The study was an analysis of 46 different studies which had 1,184 participants totally whose average age was 33 and 60% were men. Their average BMI was 24 and weight 65 kilograms. According to one of the senior-most individuals who excels in cardiology, standing not only helps to burn calories but the additional muscle activity is associated with decreased risk of heart attack, stroke and diabetes. Realize the overall impact of a person’s weight on increased/decreased stroke and heart attack risk by visiting the website www.firsteatright.com.
The researchers found that standing burned 0.15 kcal per minute more than sitting down. Standing might seem to be a punishment initially or even impossible for those used to doing desk jobs but for a person who sits for 12 hours a day reducing it by as much as 50% would benefit him/her extensively. The study team feels that the energy expelled while standing in comparison to sitting might be much greater than what the study found. That’s because, one cannot stand like a statue but is sure to make small bodily movements, such as swaying hands, shifting body weight from foot to another or taking a step back or forth. Calories burnt due to standing is doubled in case of men compared to women which is indicative of effects of greater muscle mass in men on the number of calories burnt. This even encourages people to walk over and discuss an issue with their colleague or put something into the bin that’s further down without much hesitation. Standing instead of sitting helps reduce the risk of long-term weight gain as the basic idea is to involve some low-impact activity into our everyday routine to improve health.
Ways to Stand More
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Dietitian & Nutritionist Dr. Nafeesa Imteyaz.