While the physical implications of too much time spent sitting at work, such as increased risk of obesity, cardiac disease, high blood-pressure and Type 2 diabetes are well-publicised, employers should also be concerned about the psychological well-being of sedentary workers.
According to analyses of data from the Health Survey for England, conducted by Dr Mark Hamer and published in the BMJ in 2014, spending too much time sitting can lead to depression and anxiety; examples of the kind of mood disorders that cost the UK £16 billion a year.
Both the routine of sitting too long at your desk and the accompanying lack of exercise can cause significant damage to your physical health by compromising your cardio-vascular and metabolic systems.
It is important to remember that a well-functioning brain also demands a good flow of well-oxygenated blood and glucose.
As well as the biological impact on the brain, some of the psychological effects of too much sitting might be explained by the type of activities workers tend to undertake when they are sedentary. Staring at a computer screen for too long, rather than moving about the office and interacting with fellow workers, can lead to feelings of isolation and demotivation, with endless multitasking as they flit between emails, documents, social media and the internet preventing them from developing concentration skills and entering an alpha state of effective working.
By simply encouraging their people to get up out of their chairs; to spend part of their day working standing up and occasionally to walk to a co-workers desk to discuss a project face to face, rather than by email, employers can help to improve the health and emotional well-being of their most valuable asset.