Washington DC: You might want to read this on your feet. A new research has found that standing instead of sitting for six hours a day could prevent weight gain and help people to actually lose weight. The study examined whether standing burns more calories than sitting.
The researchers analysed results from a total of 46 studies with 1,184 participants in all. Participants, on average, were 33 years old, 60 percent were men, and the average body mass index and weight were 24 kg/m2 and 65 kg, respectively.
Senior author Professor Francisco Lopez-Jimenez, said, “Standing not only burns more calories, the additional muscle activity is linked to lower rates of heart attacks, strokes, and diabetes, so the benefits of standing could go beyond weight control.”
Participants were standing still, while in reality, people make small movements while standing. The gap in energy expenditure between standing and sitting could be even greater than the study found.
“Our results might be an underestimate because when people stand they tend to make spontaneous movements like shifting weight or swaying from one foot to another, taking small steps forward and back. People may even be more likely to walk to the filing cabinet or trash bin,” said Professor Lopez-Jimenez.
The team concluded that replacing standing for sitting could be yet another behaviour change to help reduce the risk of long-term weight gain. They suggest more research is needed to see whether such a strategy is effective and practical.
Professor Lopez-Jimenez concluded by saying, “It’s important to avoid sitting for hours at a time. Standing is a very good first step — no pun intended — to avoid this mindset of sitting interminably without moving. Who knows, it may also prompt some people to do a little more and take up some mild physical activity, which would be even more beneficial.”
The study was published in European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.