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Restricting TV and Computer Time Helps Kids Lose Weight
Date:3/3/2008

use cut their TV and computer time by 17.5 hours a week.

And, the children with restricted TV and computer time lost more weight than the other children. However, the researchers found no difference between the two groups in terms of physical activity.

"Using technology to modify television viewing eliminates parental vigilance needed to enforce family rules and reduces the disciplinary action needed if a child exceeds his or her sedentary behavior limits," the authors concluded. "Perhaps most important, the device puts the choice of when to watch television in the child's control, as opposed to a rule such as 'no television time until homework is completed.'"

Dr. David Katz, director of the Yale University School of Medicine Prevention Research Center, said the study, "shows the upside to this ominous mix -- reducing screen time can help prevent childhood obesity by several mechanisms. Less screen time may be even more important to dietary pattern than to physical activity pattern. But by either means, the ends here are encouraging and highlight the importance of this strategy."

More information

For more on childhood obesity, visit the American Academy of Pediatrics.



SOURCES: David Katz, M.D., M.P.H., director, Yale Prevention Research Center, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Conn.; March 2008, Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine


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