Many studies found that a lot of television time can cause childhood obesity. A recent study found that all screens can have the same effect on teenagers too. The study found that too much screen time, not matter the screen, can increase the chances of teens becoming obese.
When it comes to TV time more than 5 hours a day can increase the risk of obesity by more than 75% compared to teens who didn’t watch TV at all. Screen time, in general, increases the risk of becoming obese with more than 40%.
In order to conduct this study, researchers analyzed survey data from 2013 and 2015. The survey data came from more than 24,000 teens in grades between 9 and 12. From those almost 20% of them mentioned that they don’t watch TV during weekdays. Almost 8% said that they tend to watch TV more than 5 hours every day.
More than 25% of these teenagers spent more than 5 hours of screen time every day. This includes laptops, smartphones, and other devices. In order to know exactly what makes these teenagers obese, researchers asked them if they drank sugary drinks and if they exercise.
The study also showed that teens who spent more screen time tend to exercise less and consume more sugary drinks than the ones who spent less time on their smartphones and watching TV. The researchers weren’t able to identify why children and teens who spend more screen time have higher chances of being obese.
The authors of the study also mentioned that screen time can be influenced by obesity and inactivity, not the other way around like their study found. This means that all of these factors influence each other. The only problem is that researchers didn’t figure out how yet.
All in all, too much screen time affects both children and teenagers. Many studies showed that people who use their devices too much have trouble sleeping while other studies mentioned that screen time affects our diet too. The only way to prevent obesity is to lead a healthy life which includes eating vegetables and exercising regularly. It is also important to limit the number of hours we spent on our devices every day.
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