Easy recipes, doable beauty tips, a 30-day fitness guide, and so much more in the September issue of Good Housekeeping Philippines, out now.

Grab a copy now!

Good Housekeeping
Jennifer Chan, Contributor
July 24, 2012

Too Much TV Affects Children’s Waistline and Leg Power

The more time they spend in front of the TV, the more likely they'll grow up with health problems. By Jennifer Chan

Kids who spend a lot of time watching television are bound to have problems with their weight. In a new study published in BioMed’s open access journal, International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, researchers have found that the length of screen time kids have affects them right down to the millimeter of their waistline and the centimeter of their long jump prowess.

Looking at 1,314 kids who participated in the Quebec Longitudinal Study of Child Development, researchers learned that at 2.5 years old, children spent an approximate 8.8 hours watching television per week. Over the next two years, the kids were glued to the boob tube at an average of 14.8 hours per week. At 4.5 years old, 15 percent of the kids watched more than 18 hours of TV per week. 

As the hours of TV time increased, so did their waistlines. In fact, every hour the kids added to their TV time between age 2.5 to age 4.5 led to a half millimeter increase in waist size by the time the children were in grade school. "Our study is the first to look specifically at waist measurements," says lead author Dr. Caroline Fitzpatrick. "The weight around the waist is particularly dangerous in terms of cardiovascular and metabolic health."

Aside from the thickness of the waistline, explosive leg strength is also an important indicator of physical fitness. When the kids reached 8.5 years old, researchers asked them to perform a long jump exam to measure their leg power. Those who spent a lot of time watching TV at 2.5 years old were more likely to end up at the bottom 5 percent of the pile.  In fact, every hour spent watching TV at that age resulted in a third of a centimeter loss in jumping distance. 

The problem of obesity and physical inactivity then stems from the children’s environment at a young age. Although a lot of educational TV programs have cropped up over the last few years, you are not supposed to expose your kids to them all. In fact, the American Academy of Pediatrics restricts children over age two from watching more than two hours of television. Children younger than that shouldn’t be watching TV at all. Instead, encourage them to play games with the other kids next door or take them to see their grandparents. Given the right direction, your children will soon learn that there are a lot of exciting things that could be done aside from watching TV all day.

 

(Photo by woodleywonderworks via Flickr Creative Commons)

COMMENTS
Name :
Email :
Website :
Comment :
Security Image
 
 
NOTE: FemaleNetwork.com is a CLEAN ZONE. Editors reserve the right to delete obscene comments.
Filter comments by:
  • Be the first one to comment...
Filter comments by:
 
follow us
Jennifer Chan
Contributor
Jennifer Chan was a contributing writer for Female Network for two years before formally joining the team as a staff writer in July 2012... Read more...
LATEST Articles
MOST READ Articles
I Suffered a Miscarriage and Fought to Move On at 34
We were blissfully unaware how soon the newest member of our little family would be called back to the Creator's side.   Sep 10, 2016 
4 Ways A Newly Single Parent Can Rebuild Her Life
These pick-me-uppers can give single parents a much needed confidence booster.  Aug 14, 2016 
11 Early Signs You Could Be Pregnant
The sooner you know, the better.  Jul 24, 2016 
8 Simple Ways to Avoid Getting Sick While Pregnant
You have to be in the pinkest of health when you have a bun in the oven.  Jun 26, 2016 
Why Being A Single Mom Is Harder than Moving On
To all the single moms out there, you are not alone.  Jun 21, 2016 
ADVERTISEMENT