10 Tips to Combat the Effects of Sitting

10 Tips to Combat the Effects of Sitting

Last week on the blog, we talked about how sitting so much affects our health. 

Today, we’ll talk about what you can do about it.

Here are 10 tips for combatting the effects of sitting:

#1: Ergonomic office set-up. Make sure your chair and desk are in the proper alignment for your body. Here’s an example:

Image result for ergonomic setup osha

#2: Get an adjustable desk. Many desks go up and down so you can sit part of the day and stand part of the day. This will reduce the strain on your muscles and joints and keep blood flow moving. 

#3: Take the stairs. Every time you have the option, take the stairs and not the elevator.  Sometimes you have to look around a little bit to find the stairs entrance, but every building has stairs for fire exiting. Taking the stairs is a great way to get a mini-workout during the day. 

#4: Take a walk at lunch. Either before you eat or right after, take a walk around the block. Not only will it combat the effects of sitting, it will also rejuvenate your energy. 

#5: Use your FitBit or other tracker to remind you to get up and move. Mine will go off after 50 minutes of no activity, so I don’t have to remember. 

#6: Get regular exercise. One of the best ways to combat sitting in general is to have a regular exercise schedule. Try to get 30 minutes of blood-pumping exercise 5 days/week. I know you know how much better you feel when you do this! 

#7: Do stretching throughout the day. Check out the book “Top Seven Ways to Combat the Effects of Sitting: The Silent Killer” by my friend, colleague, and former Chiropractor, Dr. Karin Drummond. It’s amazing! She outlines a bunch of stretches and how to do them. (I’ll show you the book during my Tuesday Facebook Live this week on the FLOURISH page). 

#8: Get regular massage. I know this seems like a luxury for some of us, but it’s really an important part of keeping your body healthy. Massage will move your blood and lymph and decrease tension in the muscles.

#9: Drink the recommended 8 glasses of water every day. Be sure to subtract anything with caffeine or alcohol from the total. Dehydration makes muscle and joint pain worse and also makes you grumpy. 

#10: Eat the rainbow. Eat at least one fruit or vegetable of every color every day. Colored fruits and vegetables increase antioxidants (to avoid toxic stress) and decrease inflammation. 

If you’re not sure how sitting might be affecting you on the inside, consider a New Client Consultation at FLOURISH. We offer many specialty labs that will look at your blood glucose and cholesterol levels in more depth than traditional labs, check inflammatory markers, assess your cortisol levels to determine stress, and more….

Please share widely with your friends and family who also sit too much! 

Could Sitting Be Affecting Your Health?

Could Sitting Be Affecting Your Health?

One of the things I’ve noticed that’s different in my life now than during my younger years is how much sitting I do. I sit on the computer much of the day for work, I sit when I do body work, I sit to rest after work, I sit for Netflix, I sit to eat, I sit with friends, I sit, sit, sit.

I’m guessing you can relate.

What’s becoming more and more clear is how much sitting is affecting our health. There are the more obvious effects on the spine, neck, shoulders, back, etc. We feel these and try to solve them with ergonomic office furniture, changing positions, taking ibuprofen, or propping ourselves with pillows. That works in the short term, but it doesn’t fix the fact that we are still sitting.

Now we’re learning that prolonged sitting can affect your heart health, blood sugar balance, vein and artery health, your weight, and might even increase your chance of cancer. I’m even seeing differences in abdominal health when I examine those who sit a lot compared with those who don’t. I recently did a Live video on the FLOURISH Integrative Medicine Facebook page to talk about what I find in the abdominal muscles and will do a demonstration of how to check yourself. (Be sure you’ve liked and are following FLOURISH on Facebook to catch that video).

Over the next few weeks, I’m going to be sharing some tips for how to avoid the long-term effects of sitting. For now, just start noticing how much you are sitting. Are you already taking breaks? Or, what else are you doing to keep your blood flowing and your blood vessels strong when you are forced to sit for work?

Then, start setting a timer for every 27 minutes. Work for 25 minutes and then get up and move around for 3 minutes. Repeat over and over again throughout your day. If you’re really motivated, you could write down any symptoms you are experiencing today and then do a check-in at the end of the day every day next week to see if moving relieves any of your symptoms.

I would love to hear what you’re already doing to combat the effects of sitting, as well as if you experience any differences from forcing yourself to move every ½ hour. And, please share this post with friends who might need to be thinking about all of this as well. If you’re not already signed up for our FLOURISHing Fridays newsletter, you can get signed up right now on the bottom of this page!

Jen Owen, N.P. 

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