While you may be somewhat aware that your office job is wreaking havoc with your health, you might not know just how much damage sitting down all day is doing.
But sitting in one position for nine or ten hours each day is not only bad for your posture, health and concentration, it can also have a serious impact down the track.
From increasing your chances of getting diabetes to giving you back pain, FEMAIL reveals exactly what sitting down all day is doing to your body – and how you can offset a desk job.
According to Australian manufacturer Bed Threads, one of the first things that sitting down all day does is you develop back pain.
‘Back pain as a result of sitting for extended periods is caused by the sacrum bone (which is located just above your tailbone) shifting over time,’ their experts said.
‘This area of the back can become inflamed, with pain then radiating throughout your body causing extreme discomfort.’
One of the best things to do to offset this is to sit well in your chair and be aware of your body so you’re able to make small adjustments through the day.
If you find yourself struggling with back pain, it might be an idea to take a brief walk around the office.
Poor blood flow
When you sit for hours on end, one of the most obvious effects is that your circulation will slow, and your blood will pool in your legs and feet.
If you repeat this day after day, your body will start to struggle to move blood around properly, resulting in symptoms such as fatigue, swelling in the lower body, joint pain and varicose veins.
Try to take a break from the sitting every so often, even if it’s just a trip to the office kitchen for a glass of water.
If you ever find yourself hunched over your computer screen, take a moment to correct your posture (stock image)
If you ever find yourself hunched over your computer screen, take a moment to correct your posture.
‘Combining bad posture with hours of sitting is a recipe for disaster, leaving your muscles and joints vulnerable to degeneration and a variety of neck, shoulder and hip problems later down the track,’ experts from Bed Threads said.
If you must sit for a long period of time, they recommend you stay mindful of how you’re sitting and your posture – and correct yourself every time you feel yourself sliding down.
There are also a number of seating aids and ergonomic foot stools to unconsciously assist you.
Being diagnosed with diabetes has now been linked to sitting down for long periods, according to a recent study published by the NCBI.
The 11-year study found people with decreasing muscle mass and movement rates were those most likely to be impacted.
If you think you might be struggling with this, experts recommend the first thing you do is consult your GP.
The human body is not able to breathe properly when sitting down, as the lungs have less space to expand (stock image)
The human body is not able to breathe properly when sitting down, as the lungs have less space to expand.
With less oxygen going into your body, you can develop symptoms such as shortness of breath, decreased brain function and a lightheaded feeling.
Try to get oxygen to your brain by walking around a bit, especially during your lunch break.
You should find you’re more productive when you sit down in the office as a result.
Similar to the body’s ability to breathe less, your body is also not able to digest food properly when you’re sitting down.
Sitting down compresses your abdomen and gastrointestinal tract and these issues only get worse over prolonged periods resulting in bloating cramps and heartburn.
In addition to this, the body processes fats and sugars better when your muscles are moving around according to Better Health Victoria.
Anxiety and depression
These debilitating mental conditions have been linked to sitting down for long periods in numerous studies.
This is particularly prevalent in people who also do not exercise during the day, as doing some exercise often means you’re outdoors, where your body is exposed to sunlight and your mood is lifted.
Researchers have said they do not fully understand yet why sitting down is so detrimental to mental health, but the link is undeniable.
Although not yet definitively established there have been identifiable links between cancer and sitting down for long periods.
These types of identified cancers include lung, uterine and those in the colon area.
A previous study found that who who watched 23 hours of television a week compared to just 11 hours are 64 per cent more likely to develop heart disease.
While others noted there is a 147 per cent increase in a stoke or heat attack for those with sedentary lifestyles.