This is what happens to your body if you sit too long

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Today’s society wants it: we sit very, very often. At work in a chair, in front of the TV in your armchair, at the table or in transport … more than 9 hours a day, our buttocks rest quietly, which is far from natural.

Studies have sounded the alarm, showing that sitting too often promotes premature death, even comparing this practice to smoking.

Here is what is happening actually goes through your body when you sit too often [sensitive souls refrain].

Your muscles are melting

As you would expect, less stressed muscles atrophy. The abs, buttocks and hips are the main affected. Why ?

Because the need to be on your feet for hours is precisely the reason why nature has endowed us with these muscles! If you tell your body that they are now useless, they start to disappear, to make way for an unsightly physique.

Your stability and flexibility will also be affected, for example, in the elderly, a sedentary lifestyle increases the risk of falling tenfold.

To avoid this, feel free to make the chair while continuing your daily activities. Staying in suspension for a few minutes per hour works most of the muscles below the navel.

If you’re feeling silly, tell yourself that at least this summer it won’t be you who look like Homer Simpson on the beach.

Your lower limbs get angry

Unused, your bones also retreat. In women, there is a reduction in bone mass of up to 1%, mainly in the legs, which has the effect of weakening them.

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In addition, the blood flow is disturbed. Blood collects at the bottom of the legs to give birth to pretty varicose veins, or even clots in the most serious cases. Finally, a recurring feeling of numbness in the feet may appear.

If your desk allows it, regularly extend your legs parallel to the floor, supporting yourself with your hands on your chair.

If you have the opportunity to stand up for a few moments, you can tiptoe like a ballet dancer. These exercises will restart the blood circulation and allow you to avoid the inconveniences mentioned above.

Your back, neck and shoulders are in pain

This is what happens to your body if you sit too long

 

Who says sitting down generally says bent. Poor posture will cause pain in all the muscles in your upper body, from your neck to your lower back. To remedy this, try to stay upright by pulling up on the back of your seat.

In addition, make your environment as ergonomic as possible! Repeated contortions are the best way to make the situation worse, so move your phone, screen, keyboard or any other tool as close as possible to avoid having to constantly bend over.

To read: 8 tips to treat back pain

 

Your internal organs are not spared

The heart is the first affected. When you are seated, blood circulation is impaired. Your heart rate will slow down and the risk of clogging and inflammation increases.

Your stomach also lengthens vertically, a position it does not particularly like and which causes unpleasant heaviness during meals.

In addition, your diaphragm, supposed to go up and down in rhythm with your breathing, will remain blocked in the upper position, making the inspirations more difficult or even painful.

 
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If you are not convinced, then sing a piece while sitting down, you will see that it is difficult to keep up the rhythm and that we quickly run out of steam.

Your basal metabolism slows down

A much talked about concept, basal metabolism is what causes your body to expend energy by burning calories.

Sitting gives him the signal to calm down, so your body starts consuming two to three times less energy than if you were standing. This has the effect of promoting fat storage and therefore weight gain, which can lead to obesity.

The risk of developing certain chronic diseases is also increased: cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, blood pressure, cancer and cardiovascular disease… just that!

Your brain is disturbed

Brain activity is also directly linked to blood flow. To stand (and a fortiori to walk) makes it possible to send blood to the brain, therefore to oxygenate it.

On the contrary, the reduced flow rate linked to the sitting position leads to alterations in cognitive functions, particularly in relation to mood or memory, and brain activity is generally slowed down.

This is one of the reasons why we always recommend doing brainstorming standing up: it unlocks all the creative potential of the participants.

Finally, in the elderly, prolonged sedentary lifestyle favors the appearance of neurodegenerative pathologies such as Alzheimer’s disease… they too must therefore strive to move.

Your daily life is affected

Inconveniences such as heavy legs, digestive problems (constipation in particular) or chronic fatigue can appear. Even more disturbing, each trivial task seems to you to be a real effort.

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Don’t panic, you are not drained of your strength, your body has simply forgotten how to use it! You just need to get used to it again. Promote walking or cycling to get around.

Let the dishwasher sit for a while and scrub the plates yourself while swinging your hips rather than running to the sofa as soon as dessert is finished.

Conclusion

Sitting too long has harmful effects on the body and brain. Some are immediately observable, others dangerously latent.

If this is a rather dark portrait that I have painted here, don’t be distraught. It is not so much the time spent in a sitting position that matters most, but more its uninterrupted nature.

So, it is advisable to get up to stretch your legs as often as possible (twice an hour is good). If there is one time of day when sitting is really not recommended, it is after a meal.

On the contrary, a short walk will allow the machine to start up again, indicating to the brain that yes, your lower body is still alive!

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