Whether by choice or because of profession, sitting for prolonged periods is a reality for many. An average office worker may spend up to six hours a day in a seated position. However, too long on the bum can be detrimental to one’s health.

Whether by choice or because of profession, sitting for prolonged periods is a reality for many. An average office worker may spend up to six hours a day in a seated position. However, too long on the bum can be detrimental to one’s health.

Healthline.com points to these possible short- and long-term effects:
— Weakened muscles
— Weight gain
— Tight muscles, primarily hips
— Sore back
— Anxiety and depression
— Varicose veins and deep vein thrombosis
— Diabetes, heart disease and even cancer risks
— Shoulder and neck tension

But the latest concern is that too much sitting results in thinning regions of the brain critical to memory formation, according to a new preliminary study by University of California-Los Angeles, which evaluated high-resolution MRI scans on 35 people ages 45 to 75.

“Blood sugar levels return to normal faster on days a person spends more time standing. And standing, rather than sitting, may reduce the risk of shoulder and back pain,” shares Health.harvard.edu. The site also points to treadmill desks as a possible alternative and growing trend.

In general, a daily goal should be standing or walking at least two hours a day, attests April’s Men’s Health. This can be achieved all at once or through a series of breaks from sitting.

Other strategies to avoid brain thinning and other looming health issues are to use the stairs instead of the elevator, eat healthy foods and walk during lunch breaks, wear a fitness band device to keep up with daily steps, walk to work and home daily if possible, and take a few minutes’ stretch break hourly.