Technology and unhealthy habits

Balancing technology and physical activity.

We have come a long way in our technological advances. We have moved from home phones to cell phones, desktop computers, to devices that fit in our palms. We have come from having to manually get up to turn on a television to being able to remotely turn on and off a television, radio, lights and doors with remotes or even by clapping or automatic door sensors. We have moved from stairs to elevators and escalators. With all these advances, is our technology putting us at a disadvantage health wise? Obesity in the United States is rising every year and a large cause is that Americans do not take the time to be physically active like they used to.

Before all of the advances in technology, people had to move around a bit more than they do today. People worked physically harder years ago as there were more labor intense jobs and there was a sense of pride from working physically hard all day. If we look at all of the technology we currently have, certainly the argument is that it has made our lives easier and at the same time, caused adults and youth to both become less active. Nowadays adults are watching the latest and greatest reality show or chatting online while youth are playing video games, Facebooking or on a computer. Although technology is great, we have to find balance in everyday life to be active or to change our routines.

Some suggestions from Michigan State University Extension that may help you in your quest to move around more would include taking stairs when the option is available. Limit your television, computer and phone time to a certain time rather than getting lost in conversations. Developing a fitness routine that is easy for you to maintain and the willingness to follow it will also lead to a healthier life. Limit youth to the same amount of screen time and encourage them to play outside rather than in the house.

In summary, although technology is great and the benefits are extensive, just like most things, we only experience it in moderation. Make sure that you are limiting yourself to these luxuries as well as keeping yourself active to maintain a healthier lifestyle.

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