You know how every time you plonk down on a sofa at home unconsciously and sit in a normal relaxed position with your legs apart, your mum pulls you up for it (especially if you're a girl ) and asks you to cross your legs and sit in a 'ladylike' manner? Turns out that the 'ladylike' manner of sitting cross-legged, especially prescribed for women, is very harmful for your body.

People sitting with a leg crossed over the knee is a familiar sight and an elegant one too.

Many women have spent painful hours crossing legs and assuming this unnatural posture to look dainty and feminine.

Source: laviesirene

Well not anymore! Bright Side shares some serious health problems that you can have, if you sit cross-legged for long periods of time.

Sitting with one knee crossed over the other for long, can lead to peroneal nerve palsy or paralysis.

Peroneal nerve palsy leaves you unable to lift your foot at the ankle. Sitting in the same position for hours can also lead to peroneal nerve paralysis, but sitting cross-legged increases your chances of getting the affliction.

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Sitting cross-legged for prolonged periods of time can cause problems in proper blood circulation and increase health risks.

Studies undertaken in 2010 have proved that sitting in this posture results in a spike in blood pressure.

This is because when you sit without stretching your muscles or moving your joints for hours, circulation of blood gets restricted and blood pressure rises. Another reason is that when you put one knee over the other, blood gets pumped up from the legs towards the chest and results in the heart pumping out excessive blood, which also leads to an increase in blood pressure.

Source: pinterest

Don't want to look old faster? Then quit sitting cross-legged because this increases the chances of you getting varicose veins, also known as 'spider' veins.

Normally genes are to blame for varicose veins but crossing legs results in inflammation of compressed veins. Tiny valves in blood vessels make sure blood flows in the direction it should, but when we cross our legs pressure on these blood vessels weakens them. This in turn leads to blood flowing in the wrong direction and gathering in the legs which makes veins swell.

When you put you knee over the other, your inner thigh muscle gets shorter and your outer thigh muscle longer. This can make joints move out of place and even lead to pelvic imbalance.

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Ladies, if you think the posture makes you look elegant, consider this side effect - this posture can lead to a stooping back and hip problems.

So wisen up and spread the word to live a longer, healthier life. Cheers!

Feat image: ZeeNewsIndia