By now we all know that obvious factors such as diet and exercise can determine whether or not you will lose weight, but did you also know there are less evident elements that could be impacting your waistline and overall health?
According to a study published in 2014 in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, where you sit at work has the ability to impact whether or not you will be more inclined to lose weight. How exactly does the position of one’s desk change the number you see on the scale, you ask? Research suggests those of us who are lucky enough to sit close to a window while toiling away at our desks experience increased light exposure, which stimulates vitamin D production within our bodies. This, in turn, can lead to more sleep, a stronger immune system, and more habits that may stimulate weight loss.
For more information about how where you sit at work can impact your overall health, scroll down. And if you’re looking to shed a few pounds without sweating it out at the gym, take a look at The 55 Best Ways to Boost Your Metabolism!
Window Seat = More Vitamin D
Sitting next to or near a window has the power to rev up vitamin D production in your body, which is beneficial in a myriad of ways. According to an Italian team, led by Luisella Vigna of the University of Milan, prior research has shown that vitamin D deficiency is linked to a higher risk of obesity and obesity-related complications, and a subsequent 2015 study also lead by Luisella found that taking vitamin D supplements might result in weight loss in obese and overweight people who are vitamin D deficient. Though more research still needs to be done, there seems to be a strong link between increased vitamin D production and weight loss.
Vitamin D Inhibits Inflammation
Another positive side effect of increased levels of vitamin D? It has been shown to inhibit inflammation, which in and of itself can contribute to weight loss. According to a study published in The Journal of Immunology, researchers found that low levels of Vitamin D, comparable to levels found in millions of people, failed to inhibit the inflammatory cascade, while levels considered adequate did inhibit inflammatory signaling. In other words, even just adequate levels of vitamin D can impact inflammation, which in turn effects weight loss.
Vitamin D Strengthens Immunity
One key to maintaining your weight is keeping your immune system strong, and according to a 2012 study, vitamin D has been shown to strengthen immunity. Conversely, the same study also showed that deficiency in vitamin D is associated with increased autoimmunity as well as an increased susceptibility to infection, meaning a lack of vitamin D can actually contribute to weight gain.
Exposure To Sunlight Synchronizes Brain And Body
In addition to providing the body with more weight loss-inducing vitamin D, exposure to sunlight is also a powerful tool in synchronizing the brain and the body, which is crucial in keeping the circadian rhythm on track and getting a good night’s sleep. Per that earlier study in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, workers with a window got 46 more minutes of sleep a night on average, and the ones without windows had more sleep disturbances. As numerous studies have shown, a good eight hours of restful sleep is the key to weight loss.
Natural Light Encourages Exercise
As if you needed another reason to resent your window-hogging coworkers, the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine study also found that of the 49 participants in the study, the 22 who worked near windows and were thus exposed to natural light during the workweek tended to be more inspired to get outside and exercise. As you know, exercise and weight loss go hand-in-hand. For more ways to lose weight, feel free to peruse this list of The 25 Best Carbs That Will Uncover Your Abs!