Binge-watching TV is killing us: Study
We know you’re probably dying to watch the latest season of Narcos, but it turns out that Netflix binge just might kill you.
A new study out of Australia claims excessive hours sitting while watching TV is linked to an increased risk of dying from inflammatory diseases like diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease.
The study looked at more than 8,900 adults and their television watching habits – however it should be noted the participants were quizzed on their viewing habits before 2000 (aka before the rise in streaming services). It found for each additional hour of TV viewing there was a 12% increase of inflammatory-related deaths. Those who spent more than four hours a day were at an even greater risk (up to 54%).
“With on-demand television, many of us easily spend several hours a day binge-watching our favourite shows,” Dr. Megan Grace, the lead researcher with the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute in Melbourne, said in a statement. “Those who spent more time watching TV were older, less likely to have completed at least 12 years of education, had lower household income, were more likely to be current or ex-smokers, more likely to have diabetes or hypertension, and had a more adverse overall health profile. High TV viewers also had a lower diet quality.”
Grace noted the findings were an important step in finding out why prolonged periods of sitting may be bad for one’s health. As well, it suggests chronic disease prevention strategies should focus more on reducing sitting time.
The study was published in the journal of Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise.