Stop binge-watching to protect your heart health

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In a new study, researchers found that stop binge-watching after about 4 hours may help protect the heart.

Based on genetic and observational analyses, they suggest that spending an increased amount of time watching television may be a risk factor for coronary artery disease (CAD).

The research was conducted by a team at the University of Groningen.

The team aimed to understand how genetics may affect sedentary behavior and to test whether sedentary behaviors are a potential causal risk factor for CAD.

They used data from 422,218 individuals (aged between 40 and 69) of European ancestry from the UK Biobank and identified 169 genetic loci associated with sedentary leisure activities (145 associated with watching television, 36 with computer use and four with driving, with 16 loci overlapping between two of the sedentary traits).

In one analysis, they estimated that a 1.5-hour increase in the daily amount of television watching (above an average of 2.8 hours) is an increased risk factor for CAD.

However, an association between computer use or driving and CAD was not found.

The authors caution that information about sedentary behavior was subjectively measured by individuals in the cohort and did not include sedentary behaviors associated with their occupation.

They note that further research is required to expand the analysis to include total sedentary behavior, physical activity, and sleep behaviors.

The lead author of the study is Yordi J. van de Vegte.

The study is published in Nature Communications.

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