A Hidden Hazard Of The Idiot Box

Couch potatoes of America, tune in! The latest medical research confirms what you probably already suspected: that too much time in front of the tube may be hazardous to your health. A recent report published in the American Journal of Health Promotion indicates that frequent television viewing is linked to hypercholesterolemia, more commonly known as high serum cholesterol.

AJHP researchers studied a group of nearly 12,000 employed adults and they found that TV hounds who watch three or more hours a day face nearly twice the risk of developing high cholesterol as those who watch less than one hour daily. Adults who watch one to two hours per day were 1.5 times as likely to suffer from high cholesterol. TV per se isn't the main culprit, of course. The researchers suggest that the real danger lies in the passivity of this pastime: Each sedentary hour glued to the tube is one less hour devoted to physical activity. TV watching also seems to foster the consumption of large quantities of snack foods.