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How Do Your TV Habits Affect Your Risk Of Death - HER Week In Health

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EmpowHER's, Bailey Mosier, talks about a recent study that links TV habits and your risk of death, how kids look to their parents for advice on sex, and a study about the drop in the life expectancy in the United States. All this and more in this edition of EmpowHER's HER Week in Health for June 17, 2011.

Hi, I'm Bailey Mosier and this is EmpowHER's, HER Week In Health.

In this week’s edition, a recent study found that the more TV you watch, the greater your risk for death by any cause, that children look to their parents for advice on sex more so than their friends and the most recent county-level analysis of life expectancy shows the U.S. dropping in years.

According to recent analysis by the University of Southern Denmark and the Harvard School of Public Health, every two hours per day spent in front of a television increases one’s risk for developing type 2 diabetes by 20 percent, cardiovascular disease by 15 percent, and mortality by any cause by 13 percent. Experts found that those who watch the most TV weighed more, were older, had larger waists, higher cholesterol and higher blood pressure, but that healthy weight individuals are at equal risk for the health problems associated with prolonged TV viewing as overweight individuals. Mayo Clinic health officials advise not to eat while watching TV and not to watch more TV each day than the time you spend exercising.

According to an online survey by the University of Montreal, 45 percent of adolescents view their parents as their sexual role model, compared with friends and celebrities, 32 and 15 percent, respectively. The study surveyed 1,200 teens across Canada and found that those who use their friends as role models were found to be more sexually active and more likely to engage in unprotected sex. The study also found that while 61 percent of teens are comfortable asking their mom about sex, only 28 percent said they feel comfortable discussing the topic with their father. If parents are involved, teens communicate more easily about sex, are not as sexually active, and know more about sexually transmitted infections according to the research.
Don’t be afraid to talk to your children about sexual health. Turns out, they’re listening.

According to a new study by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, more than 80 percent of counties within the U.S. are falling behind in life expectancy as compared with the average of the 10 nations with the best life expectancies in the world. The authors point to high rates of obesity, tobacco use, and other preventable risk factors for early death as the leading drivers of the gap between the U.S. and other nations. Nationwide, women fare more poorly than men and in 40 percent of U.S. counties, women fell more than five years behind the nations with the best life expectancies. The average person in the U.S. spends only one hour annually in a physician's office unless they are severely ill, so experts stress the significance of moving health care initiatives into the communities where people live.

That wraps up your EmpowHER HER Week In Health. Join me here, at EmpowHER.com every Friday as we recap the latest in women’s health.

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