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The side effects of sitting

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Poor sitting posture is a side effect of our everyday lives. When we are students, we sit at a desk for most of the day. When we get home we sit in front of a computer or TV for the rest of the evening.

Other than the obvious cosmetic problems due to a slouched posture, proper posture and spinal alignment are of vital importance when you consider that studies are now showing direct relationships between posture, cardiovascular health and pulmonary function.

Recently,Dr. Rene Cailliet, MD, found that "Forward head posture results in loss of vital capacity of the lungs. Lung capacity is depleted by as much as 30%."

This head-forward posture is not slouching. This is a chronic misalignment of the spine due to repetitive activities that cannot be fixed by merely sitting up straight.

While little research has been done on the correct way to sit, it is becoming increasingly evident that how long you sit may be more important than how you sit.

Studies have shown an association between increased time sitting and the risk of early death, independent of other risk factors such as smoking, blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and diet.

How can we reverse the effects of poor posture? Taking frequent breaks to stand, walk or stretch throughout the day is a great start.

Also, regular chiropractic care works really well here. A specific approach to correcting the spinal misalignment that involves gentle adjustments and isometric exercise movements tends to produce the best result.

Chiropractors have been properly assessing and treating postural problems for years and in many cases, results can be immediate. Parents should especially consider a chiropractic checkup for their children, as they may have not fully grown into their poor posture patterns yet.

Dr. Christian Chatzoglou, D.C. is a chiropractor, writer and natural health expert. For more information on this and other topics, visit www.drchrischatzoglou.com

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