Desk job making you a couch potato? Ways to increase daily physical activities. [Representational Image]Creative Commons

Researchers have found that sitting for long hours in not only bad for your hips but also your brain. It affects a section of the brain that is critical for memory.

According to a study by UCLA researchers, sitting for long hours is as bad as smoking increases the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and premature death.

According to the Mayo Clinic, 50 to 70 percent of people spend six or more hours per day sitting and 20 to 35 percent spend four or more hours a day watching TV. In another study conducted by the National Health and Nutrition Examination, it was found that sedentary lifestyle shortens the life expectancy of people. In fact, if Americans cut their sitting time in half, their life expectancy would increase roughly by two years.

In a 2011 New York report, Dr. James Levine professor of medicine at the Mayo Clinic said that sitting is a 'lethal activity'.

Scientists often call it as a sitting disease as sedentary lifestyle increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes, and a cascade of health problems.

Standing or moving help in burning more calories, improves posture, tones muscles, and increases blood flow. So, if you have a desk job and spend most of the time of your day sitting, here are few ways in which you can increase the daily activities:

  • On the way to the office, park your car away from the main gate, so that you can walk up to gate.
  • Take the stairs when leaving your apartment or walking into your office.
  • Stroll for a while after having your lunch.
  • Stand up while you're on the phone.
  • Hold a walking meeting, if possible.
  • When you're using the computer for a long time, stand up and stretch.
  • Have to inform something to your colleague? Do not mail or ping the person. Walk up to his/her desk and talk.
  • Refill your water glass every hour in the office.
  • When at home, stand up or exercise while watching television.