Sitting is Not the New Smoking


Contrary to what I have read many times and written in this blog, sitting is not the new smoking.

The idea that standing at your desk is healthier than sitting at your desk is, apparently, false.  Citing a study from The International Journal of Epidemiology, Elahe Izadi, reporter for the Washington Post, states,

“Standing is no better for a person who otherwise isn’t physically active, the British researchers found.”

To gain any benefit from standing, you have to move around and stimulate your lungs and your heart.  If you are riding an exercise bike, you are sitting.  However, while on the exercise bike, you are stimulating your lungs and your heart.  In which case, apparently, it is healthier to ride (sit on) an exercise bike and work than to stand at your desk and work.

I had one friend who lowered his blood pressure by taking four fifteen minute walks a day.  I had one medical doctor tell me that walking in place four times a day will restore your heart to good health, even after years of neglect.

Standing, of course, does burn more calories than sitting.  From a conditioning point of view, however, standing does not help you anymore than sitting.

Therefore, whether you are sitting or standing is apparently not the issue. The issue is getting your blood flowing.

Source: Elahe IzadiSitting for long periods doesn’t make death more imminent, study suggests – The Washington Post

Image: Anatomography/Wikipedia