Sitting Down is Making You Fat

January 16, 2013

Researchers have proven that sitting down for long periods of time contributes to weight gain.

Okay, I know the title might sound a little bit harsh, but it’s the truth. By now you know how an adjustable height desk can help in your health, energy, and even prolong your life. But for some people nothing speaks to them more than this simple truth: sitting down is making you fat.

According to researchers from Tel Aviv University, by sitting down for long periods of time, your body can generate up to 50 percent more fat in those areas (hips, butt, and thighs.)

The study’s participants were in a bit of a different circumstance than sitting around the office for too long though. You see, the researchers looked at MRI images of muscle tissue of people who had been paralyzed by spinal cord injuries. They found that fat cells were stretching to surround the areas around the muscles where there was a lot of pressure from sitting or lying down.

Like I said, the participants in the study were in a different circumstance than somebody who happens to sit all day at work. So the researchers took it a step further. They manipulated a group of fat cells to stretch and stay sedentary for long periods of time, representing an average person in a desk job’s time sitting or lying down, and after just two weeks, they found that these stretched cells produced nearly 50 percent more liquid fat than regular fat cells.

And it seems as though exercise is not enough to counteract prolonged periods of sitting. Studies have shown that even those who eat well and exercise will have a bigger butt and waistline if they stay seated for longer periods of time.

So aside from quitting your desk job and becoming a professional triathlete, what can you do? Well, get moving for a start! Stand up! Yes, right now! Of course standing and staring down at your computer screen to work, type, or even to read this short post are not exactly conducive. In fact, standing up and looking down at your monitor may be better for your circulation and weight, but it’s bad for your neck, shoulders, and back. Plus, you just look silly.

With an adjustable height desk, though, you can work, type, and yes, even read this article, all without harming your posture or your health. By simply switching to an adjustable height desk for only four hours a day, studies show that you can burn an extra 120 calories per day. Let’s put that into perspective.

With just four hours standing at an adjustable height desk, you burn an extra 120 calories per day. If you stretch that out to a full year of working on weekdays, plus or minus some vacation and sick time, you will burn an extra 30,000 calories per year. That’s about 8.6 pounds of weight loss per year—just by standing.

Lots of people go out and buy standing desks when they hear the news. (“A smaller waistline! Better health! I’m getting a standing desk!”). But not so fast. A standing desk is a step in the right direction—you’re not sitting all day. But it’s also not great to stand all day either—blood can pool in your legs and reduce circulation.  With an adjustable height desk, you’re getting the best of both worlds. You can sit, you can stand, and most importantly, you can move around and in between positions. Movement is the key to a better metabolism—this is when you’ll see the weight come off.

So are you standing yet? Get an adjustable height desk today. Lose weight, feel better, be healthier.



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