Blog series: Combat sitting with a standing desk! | Part 3: Weight gain, belly fat and diabetes


Blog series: Combat sitting with a standing desk! | Part 3: Weight gain, belly fat and diabetes

Welcome to our third and final part of our standing desk blog series. We hope we’ve managed to provide you with an all-encompassing resource that you can refer to again and again!

If you need to catch up, start with part one: the history of the standing desk, followed by part two: standing, sit stand, height adjustable: what’s the difference?


All caught up? Let’s go…

Part three takes a look at some of the most dangerous and unhealthy consequences of a sedentary lifestyle. Stand up when you read these facts!

The dangers of sitting: our sedentary lifestyle

dangers of sittingStudies over the past few years have found clear correlations between those who spend a large part of their day sitting and many health risks. Here’s a recap of some of the most prevalent dangers of sitting. 

Is your sedentary lifestyle putting your health at risk? 

Those extra kilos can sneak up on you

Did you know that when you’re sitting, your calorie-burning rate can drop to just one per minute? That’s insanely low. That number rises though, each time you stand up, take the stairs, go for a quick walk, pound the pavement (or treadmill!), or any other movement that activates those muscles which have switched off.

A sedentary lifestyle can contribute to belly fat (the dangerous kind)

This is the kind that can greatly increase the chance of heart disease. 


In short, everyone has fat cells, and the purpose of these cells is to store energy and secrete hormones that regulate blood sugar levels. Overweight people, though, have larger fat cells which can shut down, making insulin production (the hormone that regulates bloody-sugar) difficult.

Fat cells – scientifically known as visceral cells – can also lead to inflammation and artery clogging, resulting in high blood pressure and even heart attack and disease. 

You’re also at a higher risk of type 2 diabetes (because blood-sugar levels are imbalanced), liver failure (due to the close proximity of this organ to the belly fat), and even sleep apnea.

To add insult to injury, a study performed by the Journal of the American College of Cardiology found a correlation between this belly fat and the development of certain kinds of cancers.

Exercise may not necessarily negate the damage of sitting!

Yep, this is a harsh reality!

exercise and sitting

Australians are changing their attitudes towards healthy eating and regular exercise, which in itself is wonderful to see. 

However, those hours you’re spending in the gym aren’t necessarily cancelling out the hours of damage you’re doing to your body when you’re sitting at your desk all day!

In fact, this recent study (July 2014) has found that for every hour you sit, you negate eight per cent of the health benefits of exercising!

A study way back in 1949 compared bus drivers (the “sitters”) and bus conductors (the “standers”), and found that the conductors had around half the risk of developing heart disease compared to the drivers, due in part to their lifestyle. The drivers sat for most of the day, while the conductors climbed up and down the bus steps, hitting around 500 – 700 steps per day. 

Standing all day isn’t the answer, either!

Just as sitting for eight hours straight wreaks havoc on our health and bodies, standing non-stop for the same amount of time is no better, either!

The key here is switching it up. Regularly alternating between sitting and standing throughout the eight hours you’re in the office is the best way to beat a sedentary lifestyle and protect your body from the nasties we’re gone through above. 

Solve it! 

Moving throughout the day needn’t be an inconvenient or arduous task.


1) Move your muscles.

When you’re sitting, flex, jiggle, stretch, contract and extend your legs. Raise your legs so that your calves are parallel to the ground and your feet are pointing up. Hold it for 30 seconds. you might start to quiver, but that’s OK! After 30 seconds, slowly lower them, rest for a moment, then back up they go! Repeat this 8-10 times (or as often as you can) throughout the day. 

Skip the escalator or lift and power up that staircase! A brisk five minute walk a couple of times a day will re-energise you, and drinking more water will encourage you to get up and go the bathroom more often!

2) Regular breaks.

No matter where you’re sitting, and no matter for how long, regular breaks from sitting can greatly contribute to a lower risk of heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.

If you’re sitting at a desk or curled up on the couch with your laptop, we challenge you, right now! Up you get. Go for a walk around the office (or your house). Shoot up and down a flight of stairs a couple of times. How long did that take? Not more than 60 seconds, right?

Ready for a standing desk?

If you feel restricted in your office to take regular walking breaks, a standing desk gives you the ultimate freedom to alternate between sitting and standing throughout your work day. The best practise is to alternate regularly: every half-hour or hour. 

Our desks are most commonly known as standing desks, but they literally are height adjustable desks.

Will a standing desk become an office distraction?

height adjustable desk

Not in the slightest!

Why? Because the quiet, motorised desk adjusts with just a push of a button, and you can program in your ideal standing and

sitting heights, so you can set it and forget it!

The desk is completely level, so you won’t ever have to worry about spilling your coffee or a precariously-balanced computer screen!

The misconception that standing desks are a new trend is now well and truly outdated. Ergonomic office furniture is a major part of a harmonious, healthy office or home, and we hope you’ll take away the vital facts about the dangers of prolonged sitting, and the benefits a standing desk can bring to you and your employees. 

If you’d like to enquire about our range of electric, height adjustable desks, or any of our other ergonomic office furniture and accessories, please give us a call or fill in our contact form


Find Part One here and Part Two here

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author avatar
Guy Director
Higher Diploma in Mechanical Engineering. Ergomotion Director since 2005.

Google Reviews


Google Reviews

Andrew Pieterse 14/06/24

Great service and really quick shipping. It is great to know that you are getting quality parts from a Scandinavian manufacturer with your standing desk purchase rather than the cheap knock off stuff you get from other major brands. Reasonably priced for the quality too!

Janette Clarke 20/05/24

Guy was very accommodating with meeting him at a time that suited me. He assembled the desk prior to me collecting so I only had to carry it inside with help (it's pretty heavy). The desk is great, the storage racks underneath with the 6 x built in powerpoints was worth the extra money. I have a functioning & tidy workplace.
Guy was brilliant, I highly recommend.

Nickel 10/05/24

Have now purchased 2 stand up office desks off Guy, benchmark sales service from him, all via email, so easy; from quote to plug in, only matched by the strong quality of these machines, solid and stable. If only everything in life was this easy and reliable.

Jennifer Fadriquela 23/03/24

I purchased an EDesk this month from Ergomotion, and it was a remarkably smooth transaction. Guy was eager to answer all my questions before my purchase. As a first-time buyer of a standing desk, I truly appreciated how he addressed my queries with thorough details and provided options within my budget.

The delivery process was also smooth, despite a slight delay in the ETA. Guy ensured I received all necessary updates from the courier/removalist.

I've been using the desk for a couple of weeks now and I'm satisfied with it. It's sturdy on all height adjustments and the motor works as expected. I also like oak finish because it's clean-looking and suits my room setup.

Overall, I'm happy with my purchase and I'll definitely recommend Ergomotion to someone looking for their desk needs.

Josh Oliver 04/02/24

I've had an ergomotion desk for 10 years. It's still as good today as it was brand new. Over the years Guy has always responded promptly to any guidance I've needed (mostly help putting the desk back together after removalists take it apart).

Michael Cheung 18/01/24

Great service from Guy and the team at Ergomotion! Helped with all my queries and was able to source a standing desk part for me when many others weren't able! Highly recommend!

Shao Lei 30/11/23

Decent desk and awesome service. Highly recommend

Rod Hathway 10/11/23

Awesome experience. Great value, super customer experience, ordered, assembled and picked up in 24 hours!

Dom K 06/11/23

Skip the big name brands and buy from Guy instead, 10/10 linak parts with a very well built tabletop.

Chris Wu 06/11/23

I purchased the edesk from Guy at Ergomotion. Guy was a pleasure to deal with and the desk arrived the next day. Guy was highly knowledgeable on the desk and provided very prompt support on the installation. I can highly recommend Ergomotion.