Effects of intermittent standing bouts during the workday on energy expenditure in desk-bound office workers (#76)
Workplace sitting time is shown to be detrimentally associated with overweight and obesity1 and risk of obesity2.
Purpose: To examine whether the introduction of intermittent standing bouts during the workday using a sit-stand workstation can acutely increase energy expenditure (EE) relative to seated work in desk-bound office workers.
Methods: 23 overweight/obese sedentary office workers (mean ± SD; age: 48.2 ± 7.9 yrs, BMI: 29.6 ± 4.0 kg/m2) undertook two, short-term (5-workdays) experimental conditions in an equal, randomised (1:1) order. In a simulated office environment, participants performed their usual occupational tasks for 8 hours/day while in a: 1) seated (desk-bound) work posture (sitting only condition) or; 2) systematically interchanging between a seated and standing work posture every 30-minutes using an electric, sit-stand workstation (standing/sitting condition). During each condition, a subgroup of participants (n=18) wore a ‘metabolic armband’ (Body Media SenseWear Pro Armband) to estimate daily EE (KJ/d) during the respective conditions. Dietary intake (KJ/d) and physical activity (minutes/day) were standardised during each condition. Repeated measures ANOVA were used to compare EE (KJ/d) between conditions and to test for gender and EE interactions.
Results: Of the 12 men and 6 women who wore the ‘metabolic armband’, average daily EE was significantly higher during the standing/sitting condition (mean ± SD; 2873 ± 458 KJ/d) compared with the sitting only condition (2784 ± 403 KJ/d; p=0.007); representing an average daily increase in EE of 89.2 KJ (or 3% increase).The average EE (KJ/d) between conditions did not differ significantly in men and women (p=0.355).
Conclusion: Introducing intermittent bouts of standing during the workday using a sit-stand workstation resulted in a modest increase in daily EE compared to seated work only. Future investigations should be directed at understanding whether sustained use of a sit-stand workstation may help promote weight loss.
- Mummery W.K. et al. Occupational sitting time and overweight and obesity in Australian workers. American Journal of Preventive Medicine (2005) 29;2:91-97
- Hu F.B. et al. Television watching and other sedentary behaviors in relation to risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus in women. The Journal of the American Medical Association (2003) 289;1785-1791