Sitting cross-legged is one of the most common poses that everybody sticks to because it is the answer to appearing elegant. You might not know this but this 'elegant' and 'attractive' pose has some negative health effects.
Here's all you need to about the negative effects of crossing your legs:
1. It elevates your blood pressure
If you cross a leg over the other while sitting, blood moves from the legs upto the chest. As a result, your body has to increase your blood pressure in order to push the blood back up to your heart. Another explanation is that isometric exercise of the leg muscles (exercise when your joints don’t move and muscles don’t change in length) increases the resistance to the blood flow.
2. It may result in a stooped posture, lower back and neck pains and discomfort in hips
Sitting with the legs crossed for longer than three hours per day can lead to some serious health issues. The longer you sit with your legs crossed, the more pressure you put on your spine, which results in a stooped posture, lower back and neck pains, and discomfort in the hips.
3. It increases your chances of developing 'spider veins'
The pressure on your veins increase when you sit with crossed legs. It not only impedes your blood flow but also causes the vessels to weaken. This can ultimately cause pooling of blood in the legs and make your veins swell, which are generally called spider veins.
4. It can lead to a condition called peroneal nerve paralysis or palsy
Peroneal nerve is the major nerve in your leg that passes just below your knee and along the outside of your leg. If you sit in the cross-legged position for a prolonged period of time, it can cause pressure on the peroneal nerve. This pressure can cause numbness and temporary paralysis of some of the muscles in your foot and leg.