Associations of leisure screen time with cardiometabolic biomarkers in college-aged adults

J Behav Med. 2020 Dec;43(6):1014-1025. doi: 10.1007/s10865-020-00161-2. Epub 2020 May 26.


We examined whether screen time was associated with cardiometabolic disease (CMD) risk factors in young adults. Ninety-five adults (19.9 ± 11.4 years) self-reported medical and health behavior history, screen time (television viewing, video games and computer games), and dietary intake. Waist circumference, blood pressure, fasting glucose and lipid levels, cardiorespiratory fitness (VO2peak), and body composition were measured. Total sedentary behavior and moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) were measured by accelerometer. On average, leisure screen time (2.0 ± 1.6 h day-1) accounted for 24% of total sedentary time (8.4 ± 1.5 h day-1). After adjustment for demographics, smoking, sleep duration, total energy intake, total sedentary time and MVPA, a 1-standard deviation increase in leisure screen time was associated with a 26% higher BMI, 29% higher waist circumference, 25% higher fat mass, 23% higher triglyceride, and 24% lower VO2peak (p < 0.05). Our findings suggest that screen time may contribute to the risk of obesity and CMD in young adults.

Keywords: Lipids; Metabolic syndrome; Sedentary behavior; Sitting; Television viewing.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers
  • Cardiovascular Diseases* / etiology
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Humans
  • Leisure Activities
  • Risk Factors
  • Screen Time*
  • Waist Circumference
  • Young Adult


  • Biomarkers