Watching TV makes you stupid (says science)

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Joe Ellison

TV. Technology’s way of telling you to stay indoors and gorge on copious amounts of Toblerone. A dependable ally in the fight for cheaper weekends. The reason you’re able to smugly laud it over others who haven’t yet seen The Wire.

And yet according to a new study by researchers from the Universities of California and San Francisco, TV is making us as dim as Homer J Simpson. 

The study, which quizzed 3,247 adults aged between 18 and 30 on how much TV they watched on average and then tested them for their processing speed and verbal functioning, found the more TV people watched, the worse they performed.

“Low levels of physical activity and high levels of television viewing during young to mid-adulthood were associated with worse cognitive performance in midlife”, read the damming verdict, published in the JAMA Psychiatry Journal

Adding: “In particular, these behaviours were associated with slower processing speed and worse executive function but not with verbal memory.

“Participants with the least active patterns of behaviour (i.e, both low physical activity and high television viewing time) were the more likely to have poor cognitive function."

On the plus side, your mum can feel wholly justified for her repeated rants about too much TV rotting your brain.

Because now we know: if there's anyone more stupid than the people on Jeremy Kyle, it’s the people watching it.


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Joe Ellison

Joe is a writer and editor. Specialising in film, food, sport, current affairs, travel writing and adept at pilfering David Brent quotes, Joe describes himself as ‘basically a chilled out entertainer’. Follow Joe on Twitter: @Chevychased 

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