Kids, teens and young adults consume more media a day than ever before: whether it is television, internet, radio, video games or other sources, the average person spends five hours and 37 minutes on media a day. Is the time spent on media necessary or is it wasting our time in the digital world? Not only do social media, video games and non-informational television shows waste our time, but consuming too much media can be very unhealthy or even deadly.
According to an article on Yahoo News, a 15-year-old boy collapsed after playing “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3” for five days straight. After being sent to the hospital, he recovered from being severely dehydrated. In July 2012, a Taiwanese teenager died from blood clots from playing “Diablo 3” for 40 straight hours.
Not only are these video game experiences disheartening, but the obsession and addiction people have over video games and media in general is spreading all over the world.
Today we live in a world where media is everywhere around us.
Media is how we stay informed on news, connected with people, entertain ourselves and spend most of our time. For some people, the consumption of media gets to the point where it affects health, relationships, grades and even more.
A 2010 study by the Kaiser Family Foundation reports that screens (computer screens, television screens, phone screens, etc.) occupy youth for 50 hours a week. For youth, this is way too much time to be locked-in on media.
Ultimately, it is up to ourselves to mediate our time and priorities.
If health is a priority of yours, which I hope it is, I recommend cutting back on media and spending more time with other activities such as spending time outdoors. When is the last time you played a board game with family or friends, played catch in the front yard, took a bike ride or went on a hike or a swim?
Doctors all over America say that sitting is the new smoking. Chances are if you’re consuming television, internet, video games, etc. you are probably sitting.
Sitting down for long periods of time contribute to risk of metabolic syndrome, heart attack, stroke, lower life expectancy and death.
So next time you catch yourself sitting down for a long period of time, consider getting up and exercising.
According to the American Cancer Society, men who sit for more than six hours a day are about 20 percent more likely to die sooner than men who sit for less than three hours a day.
Furthermore, women who sit for more than six hours a day are about 40 percent more likely to die sooner than women who sit for three hours or less.
For many adults, sitting down at work is necessary and many people and companies are changing the ways they work for their own health.
The health world has found easy ways to improve health while sitting for long periods of time. They recommend correct posture, easy exercises, taking breaks, resting your eyes shortly, taking deep breathes and drinking water.
Many companies are starting to have walking meetings, where instead of sitting down in a conference room they take a nice walk and discuss business.
Health is the single most important aspect to a human being’s life: letting any activity, especially media, get in the way of your own health is just apathetic.
So, do what you need to do, but just remember how unhealthy consuming media and sitting down really is.