New research from the University of Texas has shown that standing up for six hours a day can cut body fat levels by up to a third.
The study took into account the standing habits of more than 7,000 adults across a five-year period and compared their waist size, body mass index (BMI), and crucially, their body fat percentage.
They found that among men, standing for a quarter of the time (six hours in every 24) was linked to a 32% reduced likelihood of obesity (body fat percentage).
Standing half the time was associated with a 59% reduced likelihood of obesity, although interestingly, standing more than three-quarters of the time did not appear to be associated with a lower risk of obesity.
Standing for six hours a day could reduce the risk of obesity in women by up to 35%
For women, the results were equally remarkable - standing up for a quarter of the day revealed a 35% reduction in the likelihood of obesity, whilst standing for half of the day could reduce the risk by 47%.
Regular physical activity outside of standing (150 minutes of moderate activity and/or 75 minutes of vigorous activity per day) reduced the likelihood of obesity even further.
Kerem Shuval, director of physical activity research for the American Cancer Society, and his colleagues concluded, 'Clinicians and public health practitioners should consider encouraging patients to achieve the physical activity guidelines and increase standing time for chronic disease prevention.'
However, they did note there was still 'insufficient evidence specifically focusing on the public health and medical implications of increasing daily standing time as a potential tool for health promotion,' meaning that more research into the subject needs to be done before the definitive relationship between standing and improved health can be confirmed.
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