HEALTH NOTES

Gloucestershire Echo - - HEALTH & LIFESTYLE -

LIMIT KIDS’ DAILY SCREEN TIME

TOD­DLERS and young chil­dren should have no more than one hour of seden­tary screen time per day, ac­cord­ing to new in­ter­na­tional ad­vice.

World Health Or­gan­i­sa­tion guide­lines sug­gest a 60-minute limit for those aged two to five years old. It also rec­om­mends ba­bies and tod­dlers avoid any seden­tary screen time, in­clud­ing watch­ing TV or sit­ting still play­ing games on de­vices, un­til the age of two.

“For the great­est health ben­e­fits, in­fants and young chil­dren should meet all the rec­om­men­da­tions for phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity, seden­tary be­hav­iour, and sleep in a 24-hour pe­riod,” the re­port states. “Re­plac­ing re­strained or seden­tary screen time with more moderate to vig­or­ous in­ten­sity phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity, while pre­serv­ing suf­fi­cient sleep, can pro­vide ad­di­tional health ben­e­fits.”

DIS­EASES ON THE IN­CREASE

AU­TOIM­MUNE dis­eases, in which the body at­tacks its own healthy tis­sue, are on the rise.

Some es­ti­mates say a fifth of us have mal­func­tion­ing im­mune sys­tems, many undiagnose­d.

One com­mon con­di­tion, par­tic­u­larly among women, is Hashimoto’s thy­roidi­tis. It is trig­gered when the im­mune sys­tem at­tacks the thy­roid gland which pro­duces cru­cial hor­mones. Symptoms can in­clude tired­ness, weight gain, bloat­ing and de­pres­sion.

A clin­i­cal trial of 34 women found go­ing gluten free im­proved pa­tients’ con­di­tions.

The study was pub­lished in the jour­nal Ex­per­i­men­tal and Clin­i­cal En­docrinol­ogy and Di­a­betes.

TEA KEEP­ING YOU UP?

HALF of tea drinkers be­lieve hav­ing a brew be­fore bed dis­rupts sleep, re­search re­veals.

And they could be right, ac­cord­ing to Lisa Ar­tis, ad­viser at The Sleep Coun­cil. “Caf­feine blocks sleep-in­duc­ing chem­i­cals in the brain,” she says.

New York Univer­sity has re­viewed 8,000 web­sites to iden­tify the 20 most com­mon as­sump­tions about sleep. Among the top myths was that peo­ple need just five hours.

Lead au­thor Re­becca Rob­bins said: “Sleep is a vi­tal part of life that af­fects our pro­duc­tiv­ity, mood, and gen­eral health and well-be­ing.”

Ba­bies should have no screen time

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