Latest evidence that standing at work makes you healthy

Summary:Avoid sitting, and it will be as beneficial as running 10 marathons a year. Really?

You don't have to work this hard to burn calories. All you have to do is stand at the office, according to one expert.

More evidence that getting off our backsides and staying erect makes us healthier: A simple British experiment found that a group of workers burned more calories and also lowered their post-meal blood sugar more rapidly when they stood - rather than sat - in the office for at least three hours a day.

"One woman with arthritis even found that standing actually improved her symptoms," reported Michael Mosley, a medical doctor and television journalist, writing on the BBC website.

Mosley and the TV show Trust Me I'm a Doctor teamed up with Dr. John Buckley from England's University of Chester to monitor ten volunteers who stood for three hours a day for a week at a real estate office.

The test proved a long held notion that standing assists the process of lowering blood sugar after a meal, a job handled by the pancreas' release of insulin, according to the story. High blood glucose can lead to diabetes and heart disease.

Buckley's been a stand-up guy for some time.  Earlier this year he wrote that standing at work would  help shed pounds and deliver other health benefits .

Many people spend nineteen hours a day either supine or on their rumps, including seven hours of sleep and up to twelve hours shifting their attention - but not the state of their legs - from television to computer or to some other screen, if they're not sitting in a car.

Sitting slows not only the necessary breakdown of blood sugar, but also the break down of fats, increasing the risk of heart disease, the article states. Standing helps correct that. Studies have shown that sitters live on average two years less than more upright humans.

Famous people who have worked standing up include Winston Churchill, Ernest Hemingway and Benjamin Franklin.

I see a market opportunity here: Time for Nike, Adidas et al - maybe even a new market entrant - to whip up a multi-faceted line of standing shoes.

Photo of Berlin Marathon is from K. Johansson via Wikimedia

More simple health tips, on SmartPlanet:

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

Topics: Innovation

About

Mark Halper has written for TIME, Fortune, Financial Times, the UK's Independent on Sunday, Forbes, New York Times, Wired, Variety and The Guardian. He is based in Bristol, U.K. Follow him on Twitter.

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