Television/Screen Time and Health

Television/Screen Time and Health
TV/Screen Time Obesity Report

There is a positive relationship between obesity and the amount of television a person watches. While the exact reasons and the extent of the problem remain unclear, we must keep this in mind as we discuss the relationship between TV/screen time and the ongoing epidemic of obesity now affecting Minnesota and our nation.

In Fast Forward to Better Health TV/Screen Time Obesity Report: Causes, Consequences and Remedies
we look at what we know and what we don’t about TV/screen time, what we can do based on the information we have, and finally what resources exist to help inform next steps.

Report recommendations at a glance:

  • Decrease TV/screen time usage.
  • Do not have televisions in children’s bedrooms.
  • Limit TV/screen time in childcare programs.
  • Limit the amount of high caloric food advertising aimed at children.
  • At community centers and other organizations serving youth, offer any of several proven programs designed to reduce obesity.
  • Create a social marketing campaign to inform the public about the connection between screen time and obesity. 

Other resources:

In May 2009, MDH and the National Institute on Media and the Family sponsored the videoconference “TV Viewing and Childhood Obesity: Minnesota Initiative in the Child Care Setting,” gathering experts, health educators and child care professionals to talk about the issue of TV/screen time in the child care setting.

Updated Wednesday, October 08, 2014 at 11:41AM