I would think it would be pretty obvious, if a child is spending most of their time in front of a screen watching (and usually snacking) then they will likely be fatter than kid who is walking, reading, playing, or interacting with others. We have been commercial TV-free for 12 years now, and there is not even a monitor in the Maine house, but I have been relying too much lately on the VCR/DVD entertainment option to keep the little ones quiet while Will is finishing up his schoolwork.
It is easier to say, "Sure, 1 movie," then to listen to bickering and stomping all over the house during that last hour of math and English lessons. Hiring babysitters 3 mornings a week has helped a great deal curb the video watching, instead they play house, Charades, train, Play-dough, and read stories on the sofa.
SAN FRANCISCO, California, December 3, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Children who spend too much time watching television, playing video games, and surfing the Internet are at an increased risk for a plethora of health problems, concludes a survey of several studies published today.
The review found that 80% of the studies showed that greater exposure to such media was linked to various health problems, particularly childhood obesity.
One study cited showed that children at the age of three are more likely to be obese by the age of seven if they watch more than eight hours of television a week. Research shows, however, that American children, including toddlers, usually watch far more than eight hours a week.
The study reports that the average American child spends nearly forty-five hours every week with media... By comparison, the report says seventeen hours a week are spent with parents, and thirty hours a week in school.