Stand, walk for health benefits: study


Brisbane, Australia – Standing instead of sitting can reap health benefits, and walking instead of sitting can improve body mass index and shrink the waistline, according to a study from the University of Queensland.

Researchers examined how much time nearly 800 participants ages 36 to 80 spent sleeping, sitting, lying down, standing, walking and running. Study participants wore monitors for one week and provided blood samples and measurements for height, weight, waist circumference and blood pressure.

Standing for two hours per day rather than sitting was connected to roughly 2 percent lower “average fasting blood sugar levels” and 11 percent lower average triglycerides (fats in the blood), according to a press release. Additional standing time also was linked to higher average levels of HDL (“good”) cholesterol.

Stepping instead of sitting for two hours per day was connected to a 7.5-centimeter smaller average waist circumference and nearly 11 percent lower average BMI. For every two hours walking instead of sitting, average triglycerides decreased by 14 percent and average blood sugar levels declined by about 11 percent while “good” cholesterol increased as well.

The study was published July 31 in the European Heart Journal.