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WELLNESS COLUMN

When it Comes to Your Health, Don’t Just Sit Around What About Exercise? The hour spent working out before the workday does not cancel out the increase risk of death from non-movement.

What Can We Do?

44 Marine Log // October 2017

Does Standing Help? Standing as a soul replacement for sitting can produce potentially damaging effects as well including varicose veins, excess lower back pressure, spinal pressure and increases pressure on the cardiovascular system. Almost all the research does agree that movement every 20-30 minutes for sitters or standers is critical to help decrease

The risk of cardiovascular disease, type II diabetes and blood clotting are heightened among those who sit for prolonged periods of time

the detrimental effects of non-movement. The movement requirement makes sense, so LPP1 can activate, and because our Lymphatic System (responsible for detoxifying our blood and immune response) is manually pumped when we use muscles and breath. Thus, slow consistent movement and engaging the muscles is key to the body’s ability to scrub toxins from our blood, fight infection, and suck abnormal cells like cancer out of our System.

Emily Reiblein

Crowley Maritime Corporation, Labor Relations-Union Wellness Programs/ Operations Integrity

Shutterstock/dotshock

W

e are a society “molded” by soft chairs. This abundance of comfortable “rump resters” and our constant-culturally driven use of them equates to one big, mounting health problem. The average office worker now sits 15 hours a day and studies are showing this lack of movement is life changing. Our genes and bodies are primed for frequent movement and this present day “mismatch” between our behavior and our genetics has consequences. A study in the Amer ican Journal of Epidemiology showed that when 123,000 people sat for more than six hours a day, they increased their rate of all cause mortality by 18%. A second study in the Archives of Internal Medicine, found that sitting more than 11 hours a day had a 40% increased risk of death, compared to those who sat only four hours. A third study from the Pennington Biomedical Research Center found that people who sit for most of the day are 54% more likely to die of a heart attack. Sitting is killing us slowly and quietly— the “Why” is still shrouded in mystery, but studies at Pennington show that the gene LPP1, associated with blood flow/clotting and a reduction of inflammation becomes suppressed when we sit. The gene also works with an enzyme in your blood that allows the body to consume fats (like LDL Cholesterol); sitting shuts down this consumption by up to 75%. This might explain why the risk of cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, type II diabetes and blood clotting are heightened among those who sit for prolonged periods of time.

Companies can play an active roll in making movement available in the workplace to forge healthy bodies and expansive, high performing minds (not to mention decrease health care costs). Businesses and schools are providing standing options for employees. Many U.S. government contracts are also now requiring standing options. Standing desks are cheap, and easy to move up and down. Both sitting and standing can be accommodated with one unit. The other option now being used sparsely is treadmill desks. A slow hour walk while on a conference call a few times a week can have profound effects on one’s overall health. Indiv iduals can also make health ier choices without the use of expensive equipment—including: (1) Moving Every 20-30 Minutes; (2) Engaging More Muscle While Siting. Scoot to the edge of your chair and take a good posture-work those abs and back muscles. Alternatively, you could lose the chair and obtain one of those giant, air-filled balls that are chair height; (3) Being Smart About Food Choices. Stop putting foods in your mouth that your body can’t use. Decrease the amount of sugar and high glycemic carbohydrates you are taking in. Unused sugars spark inflammation, which kicks metabolic diseases into high gear. As humans, we are comprised of genetics and systems that are forged by and become stronger by movement. The skyrocketing rates of diseases should be reason enough to start a slow shift back toward movement in the workplace. Taking the time to assess how to incorporate movement into our day is a worthy endeavor for long-term health. Nothing in this article constitutes medical advice it is for educational purposes only. All medical advice should be sought from a medical provider.

Marine Log October 2017  

The latest information on the North American ferry market