A new study suggests that too much television can be detrimental to brain health in adulthood. The research, which is in the preliminary phase, shows that excess television is linked to a decrease in cognitive performance, as well as a reduction in the gray matter of the brain.
A new study puts the focus back on what what can happen to the brain if you watch too much television.
In several preliminary findings presented at the Conference on Epidemiology, Prevention, Lifestyle and Cardiometabolic Health 2021 from the American Heart Associaton of three separate studies reveals that excessive amounts of television appear to affect brain health.
At the moment these 3 studies have not been published anywhere, but as collected Reverse It seems that in adulthood, excessive television is linked to a decrease in cognitive performance, as well as a decrease in the gray matter of the brain.
Apparently, the main reason is unclear, although researchers say that while sitting watching television the brain is not exercised enough.
“Not much to think about when watching television“explains Kelley Pettee Gabriel, the lead author of one of the studies and a co-author of the other 2, to Reverse. “Maybe if you’re watching Jeopardy, that’s another story. But it is a cognitively passive activity“.
The analyzes began to collect data in the late 1980s and participants were asked to give a scale of their average daily television viewing.
From this analysis they drew three conclusions.
The first of these is that, from a study in which 10,700 people aged 59 years on average participated, viewers who spent a lot of time or moderate time in front of the television showed signs of cognitive decline faster in adulthood than those who saw it infrequently.
The second, from an analysis of 1,601 people with an average age of 76, also had less gray matter in certain areas of the brain in old age, according to MRI images taken between 2011 and 2013.
The third study, of 599 participants, went to a clinic twice – once when they were in their 30s and the other around 50 – and it was also found that watching television above the average (2.5 hours a day) it negatively affected the brain, with less gray matter.
Of course, at the moment they are preliminary studies, although the creators of the study suggest watching less television in order to avoid some undesirable brain effects of old age, specifically decreased cognitive function.
Some diseases associated with aging such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s are mainly characterized by damaging gray matter.
What is striking is that does not speak of any type of sedentary activity, but only from watching television.
“Sedentary activities that are cognitively stimulating (for example, reading, computer, and board games) are associated with sustained cognition and a reduced likelihood of dementia”Says Ryan Dougherty, another of the study’s authors.
It is not the first study to claim that excessive television is bad for your health.
A study published in Science reports in 2019 claimed to have it connected for more than 3.5 hours a day it was related to poorer verbal memory in older adults.
Last year, the WHO published new physical activity guidelines that specifically provide information on sedentary behavior and health risks, including poorer heart health, less social behavior and worse sleep.
This article was published in Business Insider Spain by Carlos Ferrer-Bonsoms Cruz.