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HHS HealthBeat (July 10, 2014)

Kids watching screens

From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

Get out and play an hour a day. That’s what experts say kids should do for fun and good health. But researchers say kids increasingly have been just sitting and looking at screens.

At the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr. Stephanie Zaza reviewed the latest data on things young people do that can affect their health. She points out excessive computer use – including tablets and smart phones.

“We’re seeing students reporting three or more hours of computer use a day for non-school work. That’s a lot of sedentary behavior.”

If physical inactivity becomes a pattern when a person is young, the pattern is likely to continue into adulthood – and bring with it higher risks of serious health problems such as heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure and diabetes.

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HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: July 10, 2014