On the 29th April this year, On Your Feet Britain day will see people of the UK implement simple changes into their daily routine – all in an effort to stand more and sit less.
For some, these changes may mean parking the car further away from their office. For others it may mean taking a walk during their lunch break instead of sitting in the canteen. It may even mean something as small as moving away from their desk more frequently than usual. It doesn’t matter how insignificant these changes may seem; the point is to start taking positive steps to create healthier habits.
But why is making the effort to stand more and sit less so important to your health?
If you regularly sit for more than four hours a day, you could be putting yourself at an increased risk of developing obesity, heart disease, diabetes and even cancer.
The significant link between frequent sitting and illness was first recognised back in the first 1950s when researchers discovered that London bus drivers were twice as likely to suffer a heart attack compared to bus conductors whose jobs required then to be on their feet.
Due to the nation’s increasingly sedentary lifestyles, plenty of modern research has suggested that excessive sitting slows the metabolism; affecting the body’s ability to regulate blood sugar levels and blood pressure and affecting the way the body breaks down fat.
Many UK adults spend around 7 hours a day sitting or lying down, which often increases with age to up to 10 hours or even more (this excludes any time spent sleeping or napping). Computer/ desk work, reading, using the internet and travelling are among the major reasons why modern society regularly engages in such sedentary behaviour.
To minimise the risk of poor health through inactivity, it is recommended that we exercise regularly and reduce the amount of time we spend sitting or lying. That’s why the nation is making a stand to their right to good health on the 29th April – to raise awareness about the risks of living a sedentary lifestyle. Almost anyone can make simple changes to their daily routine – these are simply changes that can create massively beneficial daily habits.
You can find out more details about On Your Feet Britain day here: http://www.getbritainstanding.org/
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