The smartphone is the one-stop destination for wasting time.
And because all that time-wasting you do – farming virtual potatoes, posting on Instagram and checking Twitter – is done while sitting down or lying down basically motionless, it turns out that your smartphone has one feature that you might not have been aware of. It’s making you fat.
A study published in the International Journal of Behavioural Nutrition and Physical Activity has found that frequent cell phone users are more likely to lessen or skip physical exercise. They also scored lower on physical assessments that their peers who used their cell phone less frequently.
The study belied the belief that having a compact phone (which allows you to do a lot of things which on the go) would allow the user to be more physically active and indulge in other activities while the phone is being used.
"While cell phones provide many of the same temptations as television and Internet connected computers, the difference is that cell phones fit in our pockets and purses and are with us wherever we go," wrote the Kent State University researchers. "Thus, they provide an ever-present invitation to 'sit and play.'"
Users were divided into three categories, with the greatest users being those who clocked in more than 14 hours a day on their phones. Heavy users were found to be more inclined towards sedentary behaviour, and a physical check also revealed that they had lower levels of cardiorespiratory fitness than those who used their phones less.
Read the full report here.