Another month passes and another NZ Herald article appears on the issue of physical inactivity.
This time, a Spanish study led by Professor Martinez-Gonzalez studied over 13,000 university graduates who are reasonably young, with an average age of 37. Television viewing habits, computer use and total time spent on driving per day were recorded, then they were followed for an average of 8.3 years. Major cardiovascular risk factors were adjusted in the statistical modelling.
The probability of dying from any cause is approximately doubled in subjects who watched more than 3 hours of television compared to those who watched for less than one hour per day.
This was not seen when the sedentary activity was computer use or driving. This interesting discrepancy suggests that TV viewers have other unhealthy behaviours or attitudes that compound the effect of being sedentary.
This is the latest study that is consistent with the theme that physical inactivity has adverse consequences. The more hours spent watching television meant less hours spent on physical activities.
The beneficial effect of physical activity is undeniable. The shocking aspect of this study is how young these subjects were. The harmful effect of physical inactivity starts in our prime years!
Dr Andrew To
Television Viewing, Computer Use, Time Driving and All-Cause Mortality: The SUN Cohort.
Basterra-Gortari FJ, Bes-Rastrollo M, Gea A, Núñez-Córdoba JM, Toledo E, Martínez-González MÁ.
J Am Heart Assoc. 2014 Jun 25;3(3)