According to the Monash Obesity and Diabetes Institute, over fourteen million Australians are obese or overweight. If you’re part of this group and thinking about tackling your weight in the New Year, consider where you live and work. New research finds that interior design choices at work and home may have a bigger effect on our health and weight than we think.
Active Interior Design for Health
In the US, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) has found that interior design and community design have a big effect on health. According to the AIA, active design can help people stay healthier. Active design works on two levels: in the community and in buildings. At the community level, active design involves creating streets that are convenient for walking. The idea is to get people to leave their cars at home to go walking more.
At the level of homes and buildings, active design means creating healthy interiors. That means interior design choices that make it easy for people to exercise more. For example, that may mean designing a building so that people are more likely to take the stairs. Active interior design also means creating greener buildings. This can involve buildings with fewer toxic materials and better air flow.
Australia’s Focus on Active Design
In Australia, the Heart Foundation had an Active by Design project with a similar message. The idea behind the project is to create awareness about fitness. The goal is also to create neighbourhoods that encourage Australians to walk more. Like the AIA, the Heart Foundation believes that active design can really help people get healthier.
Active Design In Your Home
You may not have the cash to move to a more actively designed area. You may not be able to hire an architect to create a greener home. However, there are things you can do in your home to make it easier for you to stay in shape. For example, you can add an exercise room to your home. Even a basic work out area in front of your television can help you move each day. You can invest in ergonomic chairs and home office furniture so that your workday is less stressful on your body. Another idea is to set up reminders around your home to take breaks during the day to stretch and move.
If you work in a home office, you can invest in a fold-down treadmill or other equipment. That way, you can exercise during breaks or while talking on the phone. You can also keep your phones away from any chairs. Standing while you talk is a simple way to help you sit a little less. Another idea is to put weights near the phone. You can build biceps while you talk. You can also space your furniture further apart so that you have to move a bit. If you have to get up to change the channels, for example, it will be a lot harder to be a couch potato!
Simple changes can have a big impact on your physical fitness level. Just look around your home – there are changes you can make for a healthier, happier you. Get started now. If you are looking for home decor items and furniture as you re-design, visit Mojo Direct for ideas and inspiration.