When teen idol Chris Hemsworth played a computer hacker in this year’s “Blackhat,” moviegoers wondered how someone who spends his life sitting in front of a computer screen could look so over-the-top athletic. Wanna know a secret? He can’t!
The average North American adult (70 percent are overweight) sits for five to eight and a half hours a day in front of a TV, computer, smartphone, gaming consul, tablet, etc. Clearly, there’s not a lot of time left for moving around! But screen-gazing (or grazing) is so integrated into every minute of the day that you probably don’t realize how much time you spend sitting and staring.
Well, here’s some big-time incentive to get aware, get up and get going!
A new study tracked 3,200 people for 25 years and found that watching four or more hours of TV a day damages the brain early in middle age and increases the risk of developing Alzheimer’s later on. We bet all screens contribute!
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So what’s your best brain-loving plan?
• Set a reminder alarm so you walk around every 30-60 minutes.
• Get a standing desk, or a treadmill desk like Dr. Mike’s.
• Use a pedometer or smartphone to count your daily steps — you want 10,000, no excuses.
• Get at least 30 extra minutes of extra physical activity five days a week (three days cardio, two days resistance exercise).
• Put down your phone; turn off the computer. Talk to your friends and family face-to-face. The study also found that isolation (and, boy, does screen time fuel that) increases cognitive decline.
Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into “The Dr. Oz Show” or visit www.sharecare.com.