In the past few decades, watching TV has become one of the most popular ways of spending leisure time. However, researchers have found that it has a number of harmful effects on people and is literally killing them. So, why is watching TV dangerous to humans?
1. TV increases cholesterol levels
In 1990, a research was conducted at the University of California, which studied the level of cholesterol in children and its correlation with watching TV or playing computer games. The results were shocking: the children who watched TV for four hours a day had higher levels of cholesterol and were almost four times more likely to suffer from heart disease later in life. The reason for this was that the children who watched television ate junk food more often and demonstrated less physical activity.
2. TV increases aggressiveness
In 1960, Professor Rowell Huesmann decided to conduct a study on the influence of media on violence among children. Ten years later, an undeniable link between violence in the media and actual violence was discovered. The children who “had seen enough violence,” behaved more aggressively.
3. TV makes children dumb
According to a study conducted by Johns Hopkins University, the children who watched TV for more than 2 hours a day (this is especially true of those who watched TV in their room) had significantly lower results of standardized tests than their peers. This study also showed that the presence of a computer with internet access actually increased the test score.
4. TV reduces sperm quality
Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health have concluded that the quality of sperm in men with a sedentary lifestyle, especially of those who watched television very often, was 44 percent lower than in the men who spent little time in front of TV. The sperm quality begins to decrease after watching TV for more than 20 hours a week.
5. TV turns people into criminals
A group of British researchers surveyed more than 11,000 children born between 2000 and 2002 and found that those who watched TV at least three hours a day would then more often get involved in antisocial activities (violence or theft). However, no statistical correlation was found in case of the children who played computer games for 3 or more hours a day.
6. TV reduces the chances of survival
A survey of more than 1,500 people, treated for colorectal cancer, found that those who had been watching TV more often before they were diagnosed with cancer, were much more likely to die within five years than those who almost had not watched TV. However, no significant link was found between the mortality rate of the patients and their watching TV after learning the diagnosis.
7. TV reduces sleep
A joint study, conducted by the experts from MassGeneral Hospital for Children and the Harvard School of Public Health, investigated into the impact of a number of different factors during pregnancy and in early childhood. In particular, it was taken into consideration how much time the child spent in a room with a working TV-set, how much time the children spent watching TV and whether the children were sleeping with their TV switched on. It was found that each hour of watching TV shortened the sleep for 7 minutes, and the mere fact of having a TV-set in the bedroom reduced the duration of sleep for half an hour.
8. TV reduces speech development
Those who are reading this article should hardly worry about this fact, but two different studies have shown that the more time children spend watching television, the more slowly they learn to talk. It was found that each hour of watching TV contributed to a significant reduction in the number of words that the kids heard (an average of 770 words per day). This, in turn, reduced the amount of vocalizations in infants and slowed down their development. A similar study found that children learn to speak better, if you talk to them and do not turn on television.
9. TV leads to more alcohol consumption
A team of scientists from the Netherlands and Canada tested 80 young men aged 18-29 years. The study showed that they drank 1.5 bottles of beer or wine more due to watching movies or commercials, featuring alcohol, than the people who did not watch such programs on TV.
10. TV leads to early death
The study of television habits of the Australians forced the scientists to conclude that watching TV can significantly reduce life expectancy. For example, watching television for six hours a day may “cost” 4.8 years of life. Furthermore, every hour of watching TV after 25 years decreases the lifespan by 22 minutes.