Stand up to burn calories
Most of us spend a high proportion of our lives sitting down, contributing to tightness in our hip flexors, leading to potential spinal problems. Standing can help develop more flexible hips, reduce stress on the spine, cutting the risk of lower back pain, and can even improve mental alertness through improved blood flow. Now a study confirms standing can help burn more calories.
Instinctively this feels right – after all, standing makes the body work harder, pumping blood through the system, but results from the Mayo Clinic study, published by the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, found that adults who weighed 65k/143lbs (the average weight in the study) burned 0.15 more calories per minute while they stood compared to when they sat, or some 9 calories per hour. This average came from examining some 46 different studies but drilling down into the data they found that standing men burned twice as many calories as standing women, which they speculated may relate to men typically having more muscle mass, burning more energy.
Some 6 calories an hour for the average women or 12 calories an hour for men might not sound like a lot, but simply by standing an extra four hours a day – say on your commute or by instituting standing meetings – a woman could lose 1.1kg/2.5lbs and a man 2.2k/5lbs over the course of a year, as long as they don’t decide to squander this bonus on an extra daily candy bar…
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