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Though the internet is undeniably packed with great thingsā€”bear videos, cat videos, bear videosā€”it's probably not the greatest idea to spendĀ tooĀ much time surfing the ol' world wide web. Some researchers at Detroit's Henry Ford Hospital sought to prove this thesis with a recent study measuring the blood pressure of teens (between the ages of 14-17) who areĀ "heavy Internet users." Their findings seemed to confirm the obvious: being on the Internet all the time isn't great for your health, or at least isn't correlated with good health. Via EurekAlert:

In a study published in the Journal of School Nursing, researchers found that teens who spent at least 14 hours a week on the Internet had elevated blood pressure. Of 134 teens described by researchers as heavy Internet users, 26 had elevated blood pressure.

And later:

"Using the Internet is part of our daily life but it shouldn't consume us," saysĀ Andrea Cassidy-Bushrow, the study's lead author.Ā "In our study, teens considered heavy Internet users were on the Internet an average of 25 hours a week."

According to the study, 19.4%Ā of the heavy internet usage teens tested for high blood pressure. That's compared to 12.2% for moderate users, and 6.9% for light users.


The usual caveats applyā€”the sample may not be definitive, the data may reflect an effect rather than a causeā€”but this is at least some indication that there's a connection between spending lots of time sitting in front of a computer and an unhealthy lifestyle.

This is very encouraging news for bloggers.

Michael Rosen is a reporter for Fusion based out of Oakland.