Prolonged Screen Time Linked to Cardiovascular Disease

Recreational sitting for more than four hours per day increases mortality and cardiovascular events

TUESDAY, Jan. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Prolonged screen-based entertainment is associated with an increase in overall mortality and cardiovascular disease (CVD) events, according to a study published in the Jan. 18 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Emmanuel Stamatakis, Ph.D., from University College London, and colleagues analyzed data from 4,512 respondents to the 2003 Scottish Health Survey. Participants were followed for four years for all-cause mortality and CVD events, and were questioned regarding screen-based entertainment time ("screen time") per day, and level of physical activity.

Investigators identified 215 CVD events and 325 any-cause deaths that occurred during the follow-up period. The hazard ratio (HR) was 1.52 for all-cause deaths, and 2.30 for CVD events for participants with at least four hours per day of screen time compared to less than two hours per day screen time. Adjusting for physical activity reduced the HR for mortality and CVD events to a small degree. Approximately 25 percent of the association was explained by C-reactive protein, body mass index, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol.

"We found a deleterious relationship between recreational sitting and all-cause mortality and cardiovascular events. Our analyses suggest the relationship is independent of physical activity," the authors write.

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