According to new research, spending a lot of time in front of the TV every day is linked to an increase in chronic pain.
In fact, it appears that the severity of your bodily aches will continue to increase in time the more TV you watch!
The study featured 4,099 participants and pointed out that this is especially the case for those diagnosed with diabetes.
Bodily pain is rather common in aging adults as well as in the case of those struggling with some chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes.
The main researcher, Professor David Dunstan, shared that “We found that increments in TV viewing time over time predicted bodily pain severity. Even a one hour increase in daily TV time was associated with an increase in pain severity. And these findings were even more pronounced in people living with type 2 diabetes.”
The study published in the BMC Public Health journal determined bodily pain score data by using a self report survey meant to assess health related quality of life.
The scores were measures using a 0 to 100 scale where 0 meant the worst bodily pain while 100 meant no bodily pain.
That is how they discovered that there is a correlation between the increase in daily TV watching time and the heightening of bodily pain over time.
For instance, one extra hour of TV viewing increased the average pain by 0.69 units which is equivalent to 2 years of natural aging bodily pain.
As mentioned before, they also found that those diagnosed with type 2 diabetes suffered from even more serious pain when compared to those not suffering from this illness.
Sedentary behavior, especially when spending a lot of time sitting and watching TV can affect insulin, blood glucose control and other metabolism aspects in those with type 2 diabetes.
These alterations increase inflammation and worsen bodily pain.
Professor Dunstan stressed: “We know increasing physical activity is a mainstay of preventing and managing chronic health issues, but these new findings show the positive impact reducing sedentary behaviors could have. Doing something as simple as reducing your daily TV watching time can have a deep effect on pain trajectories that occur with aging, and also possibly be a non pharmacologic intervention, or work hand in hand with other therapies, for chronic pain management.”
In conclusion, this study showed that bodily pain significantly increased in middle aged and older adults over a period of 12 years but more TV viewing contributed to more severe pain at any given point, especially for those suffering from type 2 diabetes.
This is more reason why staying physically active and reducing sedentary behaviors as much as possible should be prioritized.