Believe it or not, sitting for a long time can have negative consequences for our body, so taking active breaks is essential to avoid certain health problems.
Sometimes we perform tasks that make us sit for a long time. Working on the computer, being at a reception or watching television, among others, are some of them. This is not good for our body and we can get sick or feel discomfort.
If you spend many hours of the day sitting it is important that you take some precautions . This way you can enjoy a healthy life and avoid long-term consequences.
What conditions can we have from sitting for a long time?
Lack of physical activity promotes weight gain . When you are sedentary, the amount of calories you eat is always greater than the amount you burn. This causes the appearance of body fat.
Obesity also leads to other more serious problems such as cardiovascular disease. These are the leading cause of death worldwide, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Figures indicate that in 2015 there were more than 17 million fatalities.
2. Spinal deviation
Sitting for a long time while we adopt a bad posture affects our spine. If we are not seated correctly, it is common for the well-known scoliosis or deviation of the spine to appear.
At the cervical level our body suffers from the base of the head . For example, this is because, when we use the computer, it is not at eye level but much lower. Which forces us to tilt our head and put too much effort on the cervicals.
3. Muscle stiffness
When you sit for a long time and this bad habit is repeated daily, it is possible for the muscles to atrophy . This is due to lack of movement in muscles and joints.
That is why it is important to keep moving during your workday. The muscles that frequently stiffen when we are seated for a long time are the neck, shoulders and back.
4. Poor circulation in the legs
Another complication that derives from sitting for a long time is circulatory problems. Keeping your legs in one position causes blood to circulate with difficulty. In severe cases the veins can become blocked, which is known as venous thrombosis.
Poor circulation in the legs promotes the appearance of varicose veins . Similarly, it causes fluid retention in the legs and ankles. That is why it is important to keep the lower extremities moving and to change positions frequently.
5. Constipation problems
Intestinal transit is also affected by sitting for a long time. Staying moving makes digestion easier . That is why it is recommended that after eating you stay active, without this meaning being too agitated.
Due to poor digestion, changes in your metabolism can occur. This causes constipation or constipation. If you find it difficult to go to the bathroom regularly, it is best not to sit for a long time so that your problem does not get worse.
6. Problems in the pancreas
Just as the function of the digestive system is affected in the assimilation of food, it also affects the production of hormones. The main responsible for this task is the pancreas. Pancreatic function fails , especially in the production of insulin.
The levels of this hormone increase when we have a sedentary life and a slow metabolism. In the long term this can lead to diabetes . The WHO estimates that, in 2014, about 422 million people suffered from this disease.
What to do to avoid these consequences?
Many illnesses and ailments are preventable, and that includes those caused by prolonged sitting. While you don’t need to drastically put aside some activities, the important thing is that you alternate them with movement.
Everything will depend on your daily routine. If you are a student, you work in an office, you are a taxi driver or you take breaks sitting down, do not forget to put these habits into practice:
- If you work most of the time sitting down, always take active breaks. You can do it every half hour or every hour.
- After eating you do not sit down, walk.
- Stretch your muscles and joints regularly.
- Exercise at least four times a week.
- Try not to use a car or some transport to travel short distances, it is best that you walk.
- Adopt a correct posture when sitting.
- If you will be sitting for long periods in front of the computer, make sure that it is always at your eye level.
- When you drive your car long distances, stop to stretch every so often.
By following these simple recommendations, you will feel better and avoid discomfort. Take into account that, even if you exercise, it is always necessary that you do not sit for a long time.
At first you may find it difficult to take these breaks, so you can help yourself by setting an alarm on your phone. The important thing is that you become aware of your posture and the time you remain seated to avoid consequences.