Back To Top

TV-watching boosts heart, diabetes, death risks: study


WASHINGTON, (AFP) - A review of published studies in the past 40 years has shown a higher risk of diabetes, heart problems and early death among people who watch lots of television, US researchers said Tuesday.

The results of the meta-analysis performed by scientists at the Harvard School of Public Health are published in the June 15 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

More than two hours per day of TV-watching boosted risk of type two diabetes and heart disease, while more than three hours a day increased a person's risk of dying prematurely.

Each two-hour increment in viewing per day was linked to a 20 percent higher risk for type two diabetes; a 15 percent increased risk for fatal or nonfatal cardiovascular disease; and a 13 percent higher risk for all-cause mortality.

"While the associations between time spent viewing TV and risk of type two diabetes and cardiovascular disease were linear, the risk of all-cause mortality appeared to increase with TV viewing duration of greater than three hours per day," the study said.

The habit of plunking oneself down in front of the television and watching for hours makes up about five hours of daily activity on average in the United States, but is also a prevalent practice around the world.

In Europe, people spend about 40 percent of their daily free time – or three hours -- in front of the tube, and in Australia the average is 50 percent of daily free time or four hours, the study said.

"The message is simple. Cutting back on TV watching can significantly reduce risk of type two diabetes, heart disease, and premature mortality," said senior author Frank Hu, professor of nutrition and epidemiology at Harvard.

"We should not only promote increasing physical activity levels but also reduce sedentary behaviors, especially prolonged TV watching."

<한글 기사>

"장시간 TV시청, 조기사망 위험"<美하버드 연구진>

 TV 시청 시간이 길수록 당뇨병과 심장질환, 조기사망의 위험이 높아진다는 연구결과가 나왔다.

하버드대 공공보건연구소는 지난 40년 동안 나온 관련 논문을 분석해 미국의사 협회 저널 최신호(15일자)에 발표한 연구결과에서 "하루 2시간 이상 TV를 볼 경우 제2형당뇨병과 심장질환 발병률을 높이고, 매일 3시간 이상 시청할 경우 조기 사망률을 증가시킨다"고 말했다.

이 연구에 따르면 특히 TV 시청시간이 하루 2시간 더 늘어날 때마다 제2형당뇨병 발병확률은 20%, 심혈관질환은 15%, 조기 사망률은 13%씩 높아진다.

미국인들은 하루 평균 5시간, 유럽인은 3시간, 호주인은 4시간을 각각 TV 앞에서 보낸다.

연구 책임자인 프랭크 후 하버드대 영양질병학 교수는 "(이번 연구의) 메시지는 간단하다. TV 시청을 획기적으로 줄여야 당뇨병, 심장병, 조기사망 위험을 줄일 수있다"며 "신체활동을 늘릴 뿐 아니라 TV 시청과 같이 죽치고 앉아있는 시간을 줄여야 한다"고 말했다