The relation between occupational sitting and mental, cardiometabolic, and musculoskeletal health over a period of 15 years - The Doetinchem Cohort Study

H. Susan J Picavet, L. Willemijn Pas, Sandra H. Van Oostrom, Hidde P. Van Der Ploeg, W. M Monique Verschuren, Karin I. Proper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Objective. Sedentary behaviors are reported to impose health risks. Since occupational exposure is a major proportion of total sedentary time, we studied the association between occupational sitting and a number of health problems. Methods. From the longitudinal Doetinchem Cohort Study, we selected those working at baseline with complete data (n = 1,509). Participants were examined four times at 5 year-intervals between 1993 and 2012. We characterized occupational sitting as follows: 1) stable sitters and stable non sitters over a 15-year period, based on job characteristics and (2) having a job with a low, moderate or high amount of sitting, based on tertiles of self-reported number of hours per week of occupational sitting, measured at wave 5. Linear and logistic regression models were used. Outcomes were self-reported mental health, low-back or upper extremity pain, and objectively measured cardiometabolic health (overweight, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia). Results Compared to stable non sitters, a lower risk of chronic upper extremity pain was observed for stable sitters (OR 0.75, 95% CI: 0.57; 1.00) as well as for those in the two upper tertiles for hours of occupational sitting (>4 hr/wk) (OR 0.65; 95%CI 0.50-0.86). For the other health outcomes studied, no significant associations were found with occupational sitting. Conclusion. Our findings do not support the hypothesis that occupational sitting is associated with health problems. The finding that occupational sitting is associated with less upper extremity pain might be due to the association of occupational sitting with less physical load.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0146639
JournalPLoS ONE [E]
Volume11
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jan 2016

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