22mins

Sunday Mail - Body and Soul - - LIFESTYLE -

Univer­sity of Queens­land re­searchers con­ducted their own “what’s worse” be­tween smok­ing cig­a­rettes and sit­ting on the couch watch­ing TV – with sur­pris­ing re­sults.

The 2011 study es­ti­mated that ev­ery sin­gle hour of TV watched af­ter the age 25 is as­so­ci­ated with a re­duc­tion in life ex­pectancy of about 22 min­utes. The re­searchers added that, ac­cord­ing to con­ser­va­tive es­ti­mates, each cig­a­rette costs smok­ers 11 min­utes of life, which works out to be equiv­a­lent to about half an hour sit­ting in front of the box.

While these are very sim­plis­tic equa­tions, sev­eral stud­ies from around the world have shown that ex­tended sit­ting in­creases the risk of pre­ma­ture death, and that while smok­ing rates are go­ing down, seden­tary screen time is go­ing up, mak­ing TV view­ing one of the most se­ri­ous threats to our global health.

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