Must-Read: TV Is Bad
You can’t go a week without hearing the same warning we’ve been hearing for the past 30 years now: TV is going to kill you! Keep on sitting down on the couch and watching that TV and you’re just going to slowly destroy your brain while making your body atrophy, taking years off your live as you just become a bigger and bigger blob, until one day the cops have to investigate a horrendous smell that your neighbors are complaining about, find your 600-pound three-week-dead body, and have to cut a hole in the ceiling to remove your corpse.
Alright. That might be a bit of an exaggeration. And the problem with these scare-tactic warnings is that usually there’s not a lot of specifics that doctors detail as the consequences of watching too much TV. They’re just this nebulous “something bad is going to happen” warnings. Until now.
A new study published in this week’s Journal of the American Medical Association answers that question with some real numbers: Every 2 hours of TV watching per day increases your risk of type 2 diabetes by 20 percent, cardiovascular disease by 15 percent, and premature death by any cause by 13 percent. Researchers calculated these numbers using several previous studies that looked at how sitting in front of the tube for hours on end affects your health.
So, there you go. Nothing shocking, but the fact that there’s an actual scientifically-based consequence now should make you turn off that TV and get outside for a bit.
About Rick Mosely Rick is the editor for TSB magazine.