If you were one of the 18.2 million people who started and finished the newest season of Stranger Things over the weekend then good for you. Also, you may want to stop binge-watching television like that because new research suggests it’s bad for your health.
According to a 2017 study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, avid binge-watchers reported poor sleep quality, increased fatigue, and more insomnia symptoms.
Researchers at Michigan State University also presented a link between binge-watching and poor lifestyle choices like eating unhealthy meals, snacks and staying in a seated position for long hours. “Studies show that sitting for long periods of time can increase one’s risk for metabolic syndrome, which can increase your risk of heart disease, stroke, and Type 2 diabetes,” says Sophia Tolliver, a family medicine physician.
To avoid these health risks caused by binge-watching television the biggest thing to do is stop. “Move around, every 30 minutes is best, or watch while standing for part of it,” Tolliver suggests. “Don’t be afraid to hit the pause button and do something else. Start or finish laundry, bake, walk the dog, go to the bathroom break.”