standing desk

Healthy Living At Your Desk

Healthy Living At Your Desk

If you have a desk job or you’re a blogger, you may think that work-related health and safety hazards don’t apply to you. While you may not be at risk of falling from heights or sustaining injuries while using dangerous machinery, this doesn’t mean that you can be complacent. If you spend long periods of time at a desk every day, there are many things you can do to boost your health and lower the risk of illness and injury. This guide will provide some useful tips to help you embrace healthy living at your desk.

Back pain

Back pain is the most common work-related health issue among workers in the US. In most cases, discomfort is linked to poor posture. Your posture relates to the alignment of your spine when you’re sitting down or standing up. If your posture is incorrect, this can increase pressure on the surrounding muscles. When you’re sitting at your desk, take a moment to sort out your workstation, make sure your chair is in the right position and adjust the height of the desk.

Ideally, your back should be straight, your shoulders should be relaxed, and the screen should be level with your eye line. If it’s too high or too low or the desk is too far away, and you’re stretching to reach the keyboard or craning to see the screen, this can contribute to pain in the back, neck and shoulders. If you don’t already have an adjustable chair or desk and you can’t get comfortable, talk to your boss. Your chair should provide support for the length of your spine.

sitting at my desk

If you do have back pain or you feel stiff after sitting down for long periods of time, it’s worth seeing your doctor. Back pain can get worse with time, especially if there is an underlying cause. Treatments such as medication and exercises that are designed to strengthen and condition the muscles can be highly effective. Seeking advice from experts and trying physiotherapy treatment options like therapy could help to prevent further pain, as well as making you feel comfortable. When you’re at work, it’s also a good idea to take regular breaks and stretch your back out. Reach up to the sky and then down to your toes every half an hour or so. Stretching helps to reduce tension.

Eye care

dawn rambles glasses and headphones

When you’re working at a computer, do you take any steps to look after or protect your eyes? If you’re staring at a screen for hours on end, you may find that you’re prone to headaches or that your eyes feel tired. Many of us spend the majority of the working day in front of a computer. If this setup applies to your day job, it’s wise to pay attention to eye care. Rest your eyes throughout the day by taking breaks, wear glasses or contact lenses if you’re straining to see, and use eye care software. This software neutralizes the blue light of the screen. If you experience any problems with your eyesight or you notice any changes in your vision, it’s advisable to book an appointment with your optician.

Activity

standing desk

It can be hard to be active when you spend most of the day at a desk. However, a sedentary job doesn’t have to mean that you miss your daily activity targets on a regular basis. There are simple exercises you can do at your desk, and you can incorporate physical activity into your working day. Go for a walk in your lunch break, fit a spin class in before you get to the office or start blogging or hit the gym on the way home.

Take breaks throughout the day to pace around and stretch your legs, use the stairs instead of elevators or escalators, and consider walking or cycling to work. Use an activity tracker to keep count of your steps and make a concerted effort to move around more. Even if your job requires you to be seated for eight hours of the day, there are still plenty of hours left to fit in a brisk walk with the dog, a yoga class or a HIIT session at home. Try and work out a routine that enables you to balance work and leisure time and get into a habit of being more active. If you can adjust your schedule slightly, this could enable you to make more time for exercise.

Healthy eating

Do you often snack throughout the day or grab something quick and easy at your desk for lunch? If you’re pushed for time, or you find yourself grazing cakes or chocolate bars, it’s time to rethink your diet. Snacking all the time is likely to push you over your recommended calorie intake. It can also harm your teeth and cause your energy levels to peak and trough.

It’s much better to stick to three main meals than to rely on unhealthy snacks to power through the day. If you don’t have time to get out of the office to buy a healthy lunch, start prepping meals the night before. You can prepare pasta dishes, wraps, homemade soup and sandwiches in a matter of minutes. If you get hungry between meals, opt for nuts, seeds, whole grain crackers or a piece of fruit.  It’s also really important to stay hydrated while you’re at your desk. Try and avoid fuelling your body with caffeine and ensure you drink plenty of water.

Do you have a desk job or do you devote a lot of time to blogging or writing? If you’re at a computer for hours every day, it’s important to pay attention to your health. Desk jobs may seem like a safe bet, but there are health risks associated with sedentary jobs. Back pain is a very common problem, and it’s essential to ensure that you have good posture. If you’re struggling, seek advice before the pain gets worse. Protect your eyes when you’re typing or reading. Try and be as active as you can during the day and take steps to improve your diet. Prepare lunches in advance and stock up on healthy snacks.

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