24-Hour Crisis Hotline: (877)SAFEGBC or (877)723-3422 Mental Health & Substance Abuse Issues

6502 Nursery Drive, Suite 100
Victoria, TX 77904
(361)575-0611
(800)421-8825

Child & Adolescent Development: Overview
Resources
Basic InformationMore InformationLatest News
Many Kids With Diabetes Missing Out on Eye Exams, Study FindsOlder Mothers May Raise Better-Behaved Kids, Study SuggestsHealth Tip: Check Your Child's TemperatureFruit Juice for Kids: A Serving a Day OK'Eraser Challenge' Latest Harmful Social Media Trend for Kids'Heads Up' Football Program Tackles Concussion Danger in KidsParents Don't Always Head to Child's Doctor When Illness StrikesSpring-Clean Your Medicine Cabinet to Safeguard Your KidsFewer U.S. Kids Overdosing on OpioidsWhy Some Kids Take Longer to Recover From Brain InjuryNearby Day Cares Don't Pose Health Risks to Kids: StudyObese Moms May Fail to Spot Obesity in Their Own KidsToo Much Screen Time May Raise Kids' Diabetes RiskHealth Tip: Help Kids Maintain Healthy CholesterolMite-Proof Bedding May Help Curb Asthma Attacks: StudyWatchful Waiting Cost-Effective for Pediatric Acute Otitis MediaHealth Tip: Make Sure Kids' Shoes Fit WellCity Tax on Cars Cut Pollution, Kids' Asthma RiskKidney Transplant Survival Up Among Babies, KidsSecondhand Smoke Linked to Food Allergies in KidsObesity May Raise Girls' Risk of Asthma, AllergiesDisabled Kids at Higher Risk of Abuse, Study FindsNasal 'Nerve Block' May Help Ease Kids' MigrainesCan Mom's Vitamin E Head Off Child's Asthma Risk?Asthma Much More Lethal for Black Children, Study FindsInsecticides Linked to Behavioral Issues in ChildrenCould Common Insecticides Be Tied to Behavior Issues in Kids?Complication Rates Often Higher in Youth With T2DM Versus T1DMChildhood Cancer Survivors Living LongerYouth With Type 2 Diabetes Often Face ComplicationsKids Mean Less Shuteye for Mom, While Dad Slumbers On'Superbug' Infections Striking More U.S. KidsHeadaches Often Strike Before Strokes in Kids: StudyACL Tears on the Rise Among Kids, Especially GirlsLearning Issues Common in Kids With Heart Defects: StudyAAP Policy Statement Focuses on Child Witness Well-BeingKids Born to Older Moms Score Higher on Thinking TestsThere's Fun and Fitness in the Pool for Asthmatic KidsMost Parents Don't Think They're Meeting Kids' Nutritional NeedsKids' OD Risk Rises When Opioids Left Out at HomeAntibiotics Could Be Alternative to Surgery for AppendicitisIs Surgery Always Needed for Kids' Appendicitis?Health Tip: Give Your Kids Bone-Building FoodLow-Income Kids More Likely to Have ADHD, AsthmaTougher Alcohol Laws Mean Fewer Young People Killed on the RoadHealth Tip: Protect Kids in Cold WeatherNeeded: An 'Action Plan' for Kids Prone to Severe Allergic ReactionsBe Your Child's ValentineAmbient Air Pollution May Raise T2DM Risk in Hispanic ChildrenWinning the Veggie Wars With Kids
Questions and AnswersLinks
Related Topics

ADHD: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
Childhood Mental Disorders and Illnesses
Child Development & Parenting: Infants (0-2)
Child Development & Parenting: Early (3-7)

Too Much Screen Time May Raise Kids' Diabetes Risk

HealthDay News
by -- Mary Elizabeth Dallas
Updated: Mar 14th 2017

new article illustration

TUESDAY, March 14, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Kids who get too much screen time may be more likely to have risk factors that increase their chances of type 2 diabetes, new research says.

Watching television, playing video games or sitting in front of a computer or other device for more than three hours each day was linked to more body fat and insulin resistance. Those factors mean the body is less able to keep blood sugar levels under control, the British researchers said.

They said limiting children's screen time could be necessary to prevent health issues later on.

"Our findings suggest that reducing screen time may be beneficial in reducing type 2 diabetes risk factors, in both boys and girls and in different ethnic groups from an early age," wrote the study authors, led by Claire Nightingale, from St. George's University of London.

"This is particularly relevant, given rising levels of type 2 diabetes, the early emergence of type 2 diabetes risk, and recent trends suggesting that screen time-related activities are increasing in childhood and may pattern screen-related behaviors in later life," the researchers said.

Previous research has shown that adults who spend excessive amounts of time in front of a TV or computer are at greater risk for weight gain and type 2 diabetes, Nightingale's group explained.

Since young people are increasingly using devices such as tablets and smartphones, the study authors investigated if this risk also applied to children.

The study included health information on nearly 4,500 children between 9 and 10 years old. The youngsters were from three cities in the United Kingdom -- Birmingham, Leicester and London.

The children's cholesterol, insulin resistance, fasting blood sugar levels, markers of inflammation, blood pressure and body fat were measured. The kids were also asked to detail their daily use of televisions, computers, video games and other devices.

About 4 percent of the children never watched TV or used an electronic device. Slightly more than one-third reported getting less than one hour of screen time each day. Of the remaining children, 28 percent spent up to two hours in front of a screen, 13 percent got up to three hours and 18 percent spent more than three hours each day sitting in front of a television or electronic device.

Excessive screen time was far more common among boys than girls. Children of African or Caribbean descent were also more likely to spend three or more hours in front of a screen than white or Asian children, the researchers reported.

The researchers found that total body fat among the kids increased along with their screen time. Specific indicators of body fat -- such as skin fold thickness and fat mass -- were all higher among the kids who got more than three hours of screen time each day than those who got just one hour or less.

Screen time was also linked to the kids' levels of leptin -- a hormone that's involved in appetite control and insulin resistance, the researchers said. This was true regardless of other factors that could affect the kids' type 2 diabetes risk factors, such as household income, puberty stage and level of physical activity.

The authors noted their findings don't prove a cause-and-effect relationship, but they could have important implications for public health as more children are routinely using electronic devices.

The study was published online March 13 in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.

More information

The American Academy of Pediatrics provides more information on screen time for kids.