The Television Diet

Have you ever though about the effects television has on your weight?  According to The Kaiser Family Foundation, American children and adolescents spend 22 to 28 hours per week viewing television.  The only activity they spend more time doing is sleeping.  In fact, by the time we reach 70 years of age, we will have spent 7 to 10 years of our lives watching television.

So what does a television diet look like?

  • Limit media time to 1 to 2 hours of quality programming (informational, educational and non violent) per day according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
  • Take the television out of the bedroom.  Research published in the Journal of the Academy of Pediatrics found that almost 40% of children had a TV in their bedroom.  They were more likely to be overweight and averaged 4.6 more hours of screen time per week than their peers who had no television in their bedroom.
  • Turn off the TV when you eat.  66% of Americans regularly watch television while eating dinner.  This leads to mindless eating where you disconnect from hunger, fullness, taste, aroma among other important things like family, communication and bonding.
  • Substitute exercise, hobbies, reading and creative activities that promote socialization and make your brain actively think.

Let’s face it; watching television is not an active event.  It’s passive, just like sleeping.  Make sure you are a good role model when it comes to your own television viewing habits. Positively transform a portion of your 7 to 10 years into something more memorable and meaningful.

Categories: Nutrition & Wellness

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