McMaster University researchers have linked a number of negative health outcomes to extreme gaming.
Dr. Katherine Morrison started to look deeper into addictive tendencies after hearing from a number of youth at a weight management clinic.
“We were sort of hearing anecdotally from some of the kids in our clinic that they were playing games at twelve, one, two, three O’clock in the morning.”
Morrison says cardio metabolic health is increasingly being linked to sleep
This means blood pressure, appetite and the way the body processes sugar.
In her study of 10 to 17 year-olds fitness trackers revealed that the worse the addiction the less sleep recorded.
“The video game addiction score predicted about a third of the total variability in sleep.”
For parents looking to curb sleep deprivation and the associated health outcomes, Morrison suggests setting controls on the amount time spent gaming from day one, noting that many kids start as early as age six.
She also encourages parents to consider allowing screen time in the more open areas of the house, instead of bedrooms so that it can be monitored.