Action-packed TV a threat to your waistline? - 100.7 Jack FM San Diego Radio & DSC- sandiegojack

Action-packed TV a threat to your waistline?

Updated: Sep 02, 2014 09:25 AM
© iStockphoto.com / Thinkstock © iStockphoto.com / Thinkstock

MONDAY, Sept. 1, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Watching action shows on TV may be bad for your waistline, a new study contends.

People eat much more snack food while watching action films and programs than something less exciting, according to the Cornell University researchers.

"We find that if you're watching an action movie while snacking your mouth will see more action too," study author Aner Tal, of the Cornell Food and Brand Lab, said in a university news release. "In other words, the more distracting the program is, the more you will eat."

The study included 94 undergraduate students who were provided with M&Ms, cookies, carrots and grapes while they watched 20 minutes of television. One-third of the participants watched a segment of the action movie "The Island" while another third watched the Charlie Rose show, and the final third watched the same segment of "The Island" without sound.

"People who were watching 'The Island' ate almost twice as many snacks -- 98 percent more than those watching the talk show," study co-author Brian Wansink, director of the Cornell Food and Brand Lab, said in the news release.

"Even those watching 'The Island' without sound ate 36 percent more," he added.

Participants who watched the action movie also consumed more calories -- 354 calories with sound and 314 without sound -- than those who watched the interviewer Charlie Rose (215 calories).

"More stimulating programs that are fast-paced, include many camera cuts, really draw you in and distract you from what you are eating. They can make you eat more because you're paying less attention to how much you are putting in your mouth," Tal said.

Before you watch an action movie, you should prepare limited portions of snacks instead of grabbing a whole bag of chips or box of cookies, the researchers suggested. Even better, stick to healthy snacks such as carrots.

"The good news is that action movie watchers also eat more healthy foods, if that's what's in front of them. Take advantage of this," Wansink said.

The study was published Sept. 1 in the journal JAMA: Internal Medicine.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention outlines how to prevent weight gain.

Copyright © 2014 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and Midwest Television, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.