Jeremy Herold

Adjustable Desks Not As Healthy As Reported

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Standing desks prove not to have the benefits they’re touted to have

 

It’s common to hear that being physically active is important and that a sedentary lifestyle is to be avoided. While both of those facts are true, we’ve somehow twisted the data to mean that sitting is something to be avoided, even at work.

Recent research is showing, however, that the dire warnings about sitting while working have been exaggerated and that standing desks aren’t improving the health of individuals in the way marketing has suggested.

In the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Dr. David Rempel states, “Well-meaning safety professionals and some office furniture manufacturers are pushing sit-stand workstations as a way of improving cardiovascular health — but there is no scientific evidence to support this recommendation.” He also notes that, “…at least six large prospective studies have found that increased occupational sitting time did not increase cardiovascular disease risk.” Please read his journal entry here: https://journals.lww.com/joem/Citation/2018/07000/Do_Sit_Stand_Workstations_Improve_Cardiovascular.14.aspx

That being said, there are a number of studies that have found a significant association between prolonged sitting over a 24-hour period and increased risk for cardiovascular disease. The issue with using these studies for the work environment is that context matters. While sedentary couch-potato sitting over a prolonged time can increase the risk for cardiovascular disease, prolonged sitting in certain situations – including when people are at work – has not been shown to have the same effect.

Studies that looked specifically at prolonged sitting while at work didn’t find a causal pattern.

In 2015, one study focused on workers age 50 to 74 in Japan. After studying the participants for more than 10 years, they found that among salaried workers, professionals and those in home businesses – there was no association between sitting at work and cardiovascular risk. This 2016 study examining Danish workers showed similar results. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26649851

Of course, excessive sitting over the course of a day is not healthy, but it appears that just standing while working doesn’t carry the benefits that have been touted, either.

So, while desks that provide the ability to stand or sit while working do offer some great benefits to those that don’t want to stand or don’t want to sit all day, the overall health benefits for the heart just aren’t there.

As always, if we can be of help with your network or computer, give us a call here at RHYNO Networks. (855) 749-6648

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