Why investing in employee health is good for business  

5 January 2018:

It’s widely recognised that many long-term health problems – including a significant increase in the risk of heart disease, diabetes, obesity, certain cancers, depression and muscle and joint problems – are associated with sedentary work and lifestyles.

Yet despite this, many employers still remain slow to make the connection between extended periods of sitting and the corresponding effect on the health and performance of the organisation.

There is good reason to be concerned about the impact of this sedentary working culture on the health and wellness of workforces. A major Lancet study of over one million adults found that sitting for at least eight hours a day could increase the risk of premature death by up to 60 per cent. It also suggested that sedentary lifestyles now pose a greater threat to public health and cause more deaths than obesity.

Clearly the onus is now on employers to acknowledge the role that sedentary workstyles and work practices have on health, and take bold actions to protect future enterprise productivity and performance.

Productivity firmly seated

It’s not just the physical health of individuals that takes a hit.

Ergotron’s JustStand Index study of employees aged 18 to 65 confirms that restlessness from sitting too long can prove disruptive to an employee’s ability to focus at work. Asked how they compensate for having to sit all day for their job, 39% of respondents said they indulge in ‘cyberloafing’ behaviours such as checking social media or searching the web.

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Source: HRzone

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