Watching TV linked to unhealthy eating

Washington, May 14: Don’t allow your children to be glued to TV if you want them to eat healthy. Television viewing time is associated with lower odds of consuming fruit or vegetables daily, says a new study.

Young people ate too little of whole fruit, whole grain, legumes and dark green or orange vegetables, while taking excess of fat, sodium and added sugar that can increase the risk of obesity and chronic disease throughout a lifetime, according to a national survey.

Leah M. Lipsky and Ronald J. Iannotti from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, Bethesda, surveyed the link with TV with eating behaviours in US adolescents.

They included a nationally representative group of 12,642 students in the fifth through 10th grades with a mean (average) age of 13.4 years, the journal Archives of Paediatrics & Adolescent Medicine reports.

“Television viewing time was associated with lower odds of consuming fruit or vegetables daily and higher odds of consuming candy and sugar-sweetened soda daily, skipping breakfast at least one day per week and eating at a fast food restaurant at least one day per week in models -adjusted for computer use, physical activity, age, sex, race/ethnicity and family influence,” the authors comment.

IANS