Spending too much time surfing the internet is making us fat! According to a new study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research, the more time people spend in front of the computer screen, the more likely that they're overweight or obese, even if they think they're getting enough exercise. The study surveyed thousands of internet users to find out their level of physical activity, and how much time they spend online every week. What they found was that people who used the computer the most were two and a half times MORE likely to be obese than non-computer users. They were also more likely to engage in other sedentary activities like reading and watching TV. The study also found that people who work out, but also spend hours online everyday were still TWICE as likely to be overweight than non-users.
Why? According to the study's authors, working out only partially makes up for all the time these people sit around doing absolutely nothing! That sudden burst of activity isn't enough to fight off the fat. People need to be moving regularly throughout the day. So put some limits on TV and internet time, especially if you're sitting at a computer during your work day. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, kids should be watching TV or web surfing for one hour MAX, each day, and adults, two hours. So set a timer and stick to it! Start moving around more. The American College of Sports Medicine says everyone should exercise two and a half hours every week. People who are trying to lose weight should shoot for four hours a week. It's a lot easier to fit in those four hours if you're not spending it watching YouTube videos or updating your Facebook status!