Amount of Time Watching Television for Kindergartners Linked to Obesity

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According to a new study presented at the Pediatric Academic Societies annual meeting, Kindergartners who view as little as 1 hour of television daily are more likely to become obese compared to kids who watch less television.

They evaluated data taken from more than 12,000 children in the United States who started Kindergarten in the fall of 2011.  The participants height and weight was recorded as well as the amount of television they watched during the week and weekend and frequency of computer use.

The study concluded that Kindergartners in the US watch a mean of 3.30 hours of television daily. Compared to kids who watched less television, they had a significantly higher BMI.  The American Academy of Pediatrics, currently recommends that children spend no more than two hours a day watching screens. Children who spend most of their time sitting in front of the television or playing computer games get less physical activity, therefore contributing to higher weight.

As parents we can limit our children’s screen times or not allow our kids to watch television at all. We should also encourage them to participate in sports and set aside time each day for outdoor play.  Study author Mark DeBoer thinks that parents should cut screen time back even less than two hours a day and encourage other activities like reading to their children, going to museums and visiting other educational destinations.

Do you limit your child‘s screen time?

*image credit: freedigitalphotos.net

Amount of Time Watching Television for Kindergartners Linked to Obesity
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