Is your computer the reason you are getting fat? How much time do you spend on the computer in a day? We have so much more ‘screen time’ available to us with smart phones, tablets, and handheld devices with touch screens such as the iPod that we get a lot of screen time during a day. How much of that time is non-productive while you are stilling in front of a computer? I found this article and found the 10 signs an interesting read.
By Linda York
When was the last time you had a big Mac Attack? How about a PC Pig-Out? These aren’t some junk food junkie’s gastronomical fantasies. They are terms for real-life experiences that are packing on the pounds for computer users everywhere. As people spend more time sitting in front of computers, they spend less time moving and exercising. People are exercising their “mouses” more than their bodies. They are gaining weight . . . even if they aren’t eating more!
Calories in exceed calories out
Just a decrease in the number of calories burned can pile on the pounds. However, less activity isn’t the only issue. Many people work on their computers without taking breaks. They work and eat at the same time, and it’s usually high-calorie food that is easy and quick to eat. Studies have found that given the choice, computer users will invariably choose candy bars over carrot sticks to power them through an online work session. A healthy, quick, and easy alternative is nuts—just pre-pack reasonable portions into small plastic bags so you don’t overindulge, or you can sometimes buy pre-packaged portions at your local supermarket (for great reasons to eat nuts, read this).
Those at risk
People who appear to be at greater risk for computer-influenced weight gain are those who have received promotions and find themselves suddenly working lots of extra hours; people who are bored with their jobs and consider surfing the Net a physical sport; addicted online game players; and people who report that they “just planned on checking their email” and woke up three hours later to find eBay up on the screen.
10 top telltale signs
Chances are, if you use a computer for work or fun, you could be at risk for gaining weight. The following telltale signs have been compiled from experts all over the world to help you figure out if your computer is making you fat. You may want to see if you, or anyone you know, have experienced any of these common indicators:
1. Are there food crumbs on your keyboard?
2. Have you stopped going to the mall and done most of your shopping online?
3. Do you IM or email the person who works at the desk next to you?
4. When you are asked to choose between playing solitaire online or a rousing game of volleyball, do you usually choose solitaire?
5. Do you ever want to “cut and paste” things—with your mouse that is—that you are reading in an online magazine or newspaper?
6. Do you accidentally enter your computer password on the microwave?
7. Is your reason for not staying in touch with friends that they don’t have email addresses?
8. Have you sat at the same desk for four years and worked for three different companies?
9. Does your spouse carry a picture of the back of your head in their wallet because this is what they normally see?
10. Do you have more friends in the online world than in your real world?
While it’s awfully tempting to sit at the computer browsing the Internet or working on projects without taking a break, it’s not exactly good for us. Mac users can download a free program called Time Out that times you on the computer and tells you when to take breaks. It can even be scheduled to play music to get you motivated for break time. There are options for skipping breaks or postponing them, which are tempting. PC users might want to look at Break Reminder software or Break Time or Albion StopNow! shareware.