Stand-up desks are all the rage among those of us who are chained to our computers, whether we work in offices or at home. Are they worth the cost? How much do people with type 2 diabetes benefit from the extra activity provided by a stand-up desk?
How much time do we spend sitting?
A recent study appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The study concluded that American adults spend an average of 6.5 hours per day in the sitting position, which is an increase of almost an hour per day during the previous decade. Even worse, American adolescents spend 8 hours a day in the sitting position.
Americans who have college degrees, as well as Americans who are already considered obese, are the most sedentary among us. This excess sitting may be due to the nature of white-collar office jobs. It could also be because people with higher educations tend to have more financial resources, and the ability to outsource physical labor.
Does more sitting time lead to more diabetes?
In short, yes. Sitting time increases our risk of serious chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes. In particular, people who spend more time watching television have an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and death.
The US Department of Health and Human Services updated its Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans in 2018. The Guidelines recommend a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate activity or 75 minutes per week of intense activity for adults.
I don’t know about you, but I feel drained at the end of a full day when I’ve been required to sit, but I still have to use my computer for work. What to do about all of this sitting?
I recently purchased a good quality adjustable standing desk, which is a workstation that holds my computer monitor and keyboard. At the touch of a handle, I can raise or lower my workstation and go from sitting to standing. If you’ve never encountered one of these, you can see the AnthroDesk that I ordered (ErgoSpring Standing Desk Converter – Extra Wide). I love the ability to sit and stand whenever I feel the need to change position.
Will a Stand-Up Desk Improve My Health?
I’ve seen studies that show an improvement in the health of school children, college students, and sedentary office workers when they use sit-stand desks. I wasn’t sure if I would like this standing desk at first, but as it turns out, I love it! At the end of my workday, I’m not nearly as fatigued when I’ve used the adjustable desk. It seems Isaac Newton was right when he said, “A body in motion tends to stay in motion…”. Stand up for your health, everybody!