Dementia: Binge-watching television can increase risk later in life, study finds - Upsmag - Magazine News

Dementia: Binge-watching television can increase risk later in life, study finds

Research shows that more than 850,000 people in the UK have dementia. The number is rising, and by 2025 it’s estimated that over one million people in the UK will have the degenerative disease

Binge watching television could impact your dementia risk later in life (

Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Millions of people follow an unhealthy lifestyle, but all lifestyle choices that people follow in their lifetime can have an impact on their current and future health.

Not exercising, binge-drinking, unhealthy eating and smoking can all have devastating impacts on overall health and longevity.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 60-85% of people in the world lead sedentary lifestyles, making it one of the more serious – yet insufficiently addressed – public health concerns of our time.

Recent studies have pinpointed how a sedentary life spent binge-watching hours of TV can increase a person’s cardiovascular disease risk.

However, leading health experts have also warned that the amount of TV you watch when you’re younger can impact your risk of developing dementia in later life.

What’s the link between television watching and dementia?

Researchers from Oxford University investigated changes in the brains of 785 participants
(

Image:

Getty Images/Cultura RF)


According to a study by the Northern California Institute for Research and Education, people who watch four hours or more of television per day scored lower marks on tests measuring cognitive performance in middle age, than when they were younger.

The study aimed to look at the link between a sedentary lifestyle and the risk of developing dementia in later life.

The research involved data from young adults who were tracked for 25 years.

Professor of psychiatry, neurology and epidemiology, Kristine Yaffe, said the results have important implications for children and young adults, who are more than ever glued to the screens of either television sets or tablets as part of a sedentary life at home and in the workplace .

“While studies have shown the benefits of exercise to support brain health, less is known about the potential consequences of prolonged sedentary behavior such as television viewing on brain structure and function,” said Dr Kelley Pettee Gabriel.

She added: “This is important to look at because other studies have shown that physical activity and sedentary behaviors may have different effects on health and disease.

“Engaging in healthy behaviors during midlife, between ages 45 to 64 years in the context of our study, may be important factors to support a healthy brain later in life.”

Research has found that 24.5 hours of TV a week can increase your risk of developing dementia.

Experts suggest rather than idly spending your time binge-watching television, people should do activities which help engage the brain.

One research study looked at six leisure activities which included reading, writing, crossword puzzles, board or card games, group discussions, or playing music and its impact on cognitive health.

The study concluded: “Participation in cognitively stimulating leisure activities delayed the onset of accelerated cognitive decline.”

For the best leisure activity for the brain, crossword puzzles came out on top.

Reduce your risk

According to the NHS, habits to help reduce your risk of dementia later in life include:

  • Eating a healthy, balanced diet
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Exercising regularly
  • Keeping alcohol within recommended limits
  • stopping smoking
  • Keeping your blood pressure at a healthy level.

Read More

Read More

Research shows that more than 850,000 people in the UK have dementia. The number is rising, and by 2025 it’s estimated that over one million people in the UK will have the degenerative disease

Binge watching TV and dementia risk
Binge watching television could impact your dementia risk later in life (

Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Millions of people follow an unhealthy lifestyle, but all lifestyle choices that people follow in their lifetime can have an impact on their current and future health.

Not exercising, binge-drinking, unhealthy eating and smoking can all have devastating impacts on overall health and longevity.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 60-85% of people in the world lead sedentary lifestyles, making it one of the more serious – yet insufficiently addressed – public health concerns of our time.

Recent studies have pinpointed how a sedentary life spent binge-watching hours of TV can increase a person’s cardiovascular disease risk.

However, leading health experts have also warned that the amount of TV you watch when you’re younger can impact your risk of developing dementia in later life.

What’s the link between television watching and dementia?

Researchers from Oxford University investigated changes in the brains of 785 participants
(

Image:

Getty Images/Cultura RF)


According to a study by the Northern California Institute for Research and Education, people who watch four hours or more of television per day scored lower marks on tests measuring cognitive performance in middle age, than when they were younger.

The study aimed to look at the link between a sedentary lifestyle and the risk of developing dementia in later life.

The research involved data from young adults who were tracked for 25 years.

Professor of psychiatry, neurology and epidemiology, Kristine Yaffe, said the results have important implications for children and young adults, who are more than ever glued to the screens of either television sets or tablets as part of a sedentary life at home and in the workplace .

“While studies have shown the benefits of exercise to support brain health, less is known about the potential consequences of prolonged sedentary behavior such as television viewing on brain structure and function,” said Dr Kelley Pettee Gabriel.

She added: “This is important to look at because other studies have shown that physical activity and sedentary behaviors may have different effects on health and disease.

“Engaging in healthy behaviors during midlife, between ages 45 to 64 years in the context of our study, may be important factors to support a healthy brain later in life.”

Research has found that 24.5 hours of TV a week can increase your risk of developing dementia.

Experts suggest rather than idly spending your time binge-watching television, people should do activities which help engage the brain.

One research study looked at six leisure activities which included reading, writing, crossword puzzles, board or card games, group discussions, or playing music and its impact on cognitive health.

The study concluded: “Participation in cognitively stimulating leisure activities delayed the onset of accelerated cognitive decline.”

For the best leisure activity for the brain, crossword puzzles came out on top.

Reduce your risk

According to the NHS, habits to help reduce your risk of dementia later in life include:

  • Eating a healthy, balanced diet
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Exercising regularly
  • Keeping alcohol within recommended limits
  • stopping smoking
  • Keeping your blood pressure at a healthy level.

Read More

Read More

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