Less TV May Help Obese Kids Lose Weight
WebMD News Archive
Unfortunately, "most people have living rooms with huge television sets,
hundreds of channels, a state-of-the art sound system, a VCR or a DVD player
that are set up to encourage physical inactivity while any exercise equipment
is usually hidden in the basement," Epstein says.
Arthur Frank, MD, medical director for the weight management program at
George Washington University in Washington, D.C., reviewed the study for WebMD.
He says the most important point to take from it is that decreasing inactive
behavior and increasing active behavior are the keys to staying fit. Adults
have to play an active role in their children's health. Children, particularly
overweight children, need good role models, he says.
"One solution is to take an ax to the television, but the trouble is
that most adults don't want to do that and you can't say to kids 'no TV, for
you, but I can watch as much as I want,'" Frank tells WebMD.
"In order to get kids to change their behaviors, adults must change
their behaviors as well. You can't just signal out one person; it's a family
- At least one in five American children is overweight, a number that has
increased more than 50% in the past 20 years.
- A new study shows that reducing the amount of time kids participate in
sedentary behaviors, such as watching television or playing video games, can
help overweight children lose weight.
- Parents can help their children by budgeting television time in advance,
encouraging physical activities, and being a good role model.