The body of research that shows the negative effects of excessive TV viewing keeps increasing every day. The newest study is from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children at the University of Bristol in the UK. The Avon study is a long term study that has followed over 14000 children for the past 15+ years. In this particular study on asthma, over 3000 children were observed.
The study focused on children who had no asthma symptoms at 3.5 years but then had an asthma diagnosis in the next 4 years (before they turned 7.5 years). The study found that children who had watched more than 2 hours of TV each day were twice as likely to have developed asthma than children who had watched less than 2 hours of TV each day. The results were true for boys and girls, and body weight was not a factor also.
The authors comment that the relationship between physical activity, sedentary behaviour and asthma is complex. But they point out that recent research has suggested that breathing patterns in children may be associated with sedentary behaviour, sparking developmental changes in the lungs and subsequent wheezing.
The asthma study is being published in the journal Thorax.