Benefits of Using a Standing Desk
Sitting for prolonged periods can potentially be bad for your health. It’s possible for it to negatively affect both your physical health and mental well-being.
But if your job requires you to sit at a desk for most of your waking hours, there isn’t much you can do, right? Wrong.
As you’ve already guessed, a standing desk can make all the difference. It can help you improve your overall health, and even give your creativity and productivity a boost. Who wouldn’t want to try it then?
Here are the top reasons why you should start using a standing desk as soon as possible.
Relieving Back Pain
For anyone working in an office, back pain is one of the most difficult challenges to face daily. That’s why every health and fitness expert advises as much physical activity as possible.
But that may be nearly impossible if you work all day long and barely have time to eat and take a shower. That’s where a standing desk comes to the rescue.
Many studies have shown that a standing desk can reduce back pain. The Take-a-Stand Project found that a sit-stand desk can reduce neck and back pain by 54%.
Another study on standing desks revealed that they could reduce lower back pain by 31.8%.
This should be a reason enough to give a standing desk a go, even if you don’t feel any back pain at the moment. Better safe than sorry.
Burning More Calories
Apart from relieving pain, losing weight is another very common reason why many people use standing desks.
When you sit for a long time, every day, your body can’t burn all the calories you eat fast enough. Hence, you start gaining weight before you even know it.
But if you start standing more, you’ll start burning more calories.
One study on standing-based office work discovered that only one afternoon of standing instead of sitting leads to 174 additional burned calories.
It’s a far cry from actually exercising to lose weight, but it’s definitely a good start.
Lowering Blood Sugar
You may already know that your blood sugar levels start to increase right after having a meal. They keep rising for about an hour or so before insulin starts working to get them back to normal.
It’s important not to get your blood sugar too high. But for people living with type 2 diabetes, those sugar spikes can be especially dangerous to health. Luckily, a standing desk can help.
An Australian study looked at triglyceride, glucose, and insulin responses in obese sedentary office workers. They switched between sitting and standing every 30 minutes during their workday.
After five days, they experienced an average of 11.1% reduction in blood sugar.
Everyone’s diet and daily number of steps matched, so the decrease was all thanks to standing more.
The previously mentioned study concerning calories also looked at blood sugar levels in the participants, showing a whopping 43% decrease after standing for 185 minutes.
Improving Cardiovascular Health
Numerous studies have proven over the years that standing more than we sit can help keep heart disease and various other conditions at bay.
The University of Leicester examined 18 studies on sedentary time in adults. The collective results revealed that sitting for prolonged periods of time increases the risk of heart disease by a staggering 147%.
It also found that sitting increases the risk of diabetes by 112%, among other negative effects on health.
And since standing on your feet more helps you reduce both blood sugar and weight, it goes without saying that it’s much better for your cardiovascular health.
Reducing Stress and Boosting Energy
Incorporating more standing into your workday can also make you happier and more energized.
Once again, there are studies to prove it.
The Take-a-Stand Project also examined energy levels and the overall mental health of the participants. It found that 87% of them started feeling they had more energy throughout the day after adding a sit-stand device to their workstation.
It also revealed that almost all participants began feeling happier, less stressed, and more focused.
What’s interesting is that this study found that all the benefits gained from standing went down the drain after only two weeks of prolonged sitting.
That’s an excellent reason to stick to a standing desk once you incorporate it into your lifestyle.
There was a study in Sydney, Australia, called “Thinking on Your Feet.” It observed office workers for changes in productivity after introducing them to sit-stand desks.
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Of 31 participants, 66% reported being more productive while standing during their workdays. They felt more alert, more focused, and essentially felt better and happier.
Being happier usually means higher productivity, but all those benefits combined definitely translate into more productive workers.
Add to that all the benefits discussed above, and it’s really not surprising that a productivity boost is in order.
This benefit is the natural product of all the benefits we talked about.
When there’s no stress or stubborn back or neck pain, nothing can get in your way of doing a great job. When your overall health is in top condition and you feel happy and energized, you can easily get your creative juices flowing.
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“Thinking on your feet” gets a truly new dimension.
That’s precisely why there are more and more brainstorming sessions without any chairs in the room. You’re more alert, and you feel a rush to come up with a solution, so your brain starts firing up its neurons to pump up your creativity.
Ditch your chair and see for yourself! You’ll be in for a world of delightful surprises.
Take a Stand and Improve Your Life
Switching to a standing desk definitely takes some getting used to. It can be so challenging at first that you may feel the urge to sit back down in just a couple of minutes. And that’s completely normal for anyone who’s used to leading a sedentary lifestyle.
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But if you want to experience all these benefits and start living a healthier life, you should try and make the switch. Take baby steps if you find it a bit tough, and a couple of minutes will soon turn into half an hour or an hour.
Before you know it, you’ll start feeling remarkably comfortable standing for most of your workday, forgetting to sit down until you’ve finished all your tasks. It’s an incredible feeling that you should really experience for yourself.
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