Strong Association Between Time Watching Television and Blood Glucose Control in Children and Adolescents With Type 1 Diabetes

  1. Hanna D. Margeirsdottir, MD123,
  2. Jakob R. Larsen, MD123,
  3. Cathrine Brunborg, MSC4,
  4. Leiv Sandvik, PHD4,
  5. Knut Dahl-Jørgensen, MD123 and
  6. for the Norwegian Study Group for Childhood Diabetes
  1. 1Faculty of Medicine, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway
  2. 2Department of Pediatrics, Ullevaal University Hospital, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway
  3. 3Diabetes Research Centre, Aker and Ullevaal University Hospitals, Oslo, Norway
  4. 4Center for Medical Statistics, Ullevaal University Hospital, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway
  1. Address correspondence and reprint requests to Hanna Dis Margeirsdottir, Department of Pediatrics, Ullevaal University Hospital, 0407 Oslo, Norway. E-mail: h.d.margeirsdottir{at}


OBJECTIVE—To examine the relationship between blood glucose control and the time spent watching television in Norwegian children and adolescents with type 1 diabetes in a population-based study.

RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS—A total of 538 children and adolescents from 9 hospitals in the eastern part of Norway participated in the study; 70% of eligible subjects participated. The time spent watching television and time using a computer was recorded separately by interview together with clinical data. Mean (±SD) age was 13.1 ± 3.7 years, mean diabetes duration was 5.4 ± 3.4 years, and mean A1C was 8.6 ± 1.3% (reference range 4.1–6.4).

RESULTS—Sixty-two patients (11%) watched television <1 h daily (mean A1C 8.2 ± 0.9%), 189 patients (35%) watched television between 1 and 2 h daily (8.4 ± 1.2%), 166 patients (31%) watched television 2–3 h daily (8.7 ± 1.4%), 75 patients (14%) watched television 3–4 h daily (8.8 ± 1.2%), and 46 patients (9%) watched television ≥4 h daily (9.5 ± 1.6%). This trend was highly significant (P < 0.001). The association between television viewing and A1C remained significant, even after adjusting for age and BMI and insulin dose. No correlation between A1C and the use of a personal computer was observed.

CONCLUSIONS—Extensive television watching is associated with poor blood glucose control in children and adolescents with type 1 diabetes.


  • Published ahead of print at on 19 March 2007. DOI: 10.2337/dc06-2112.

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    • Accepted March 9, 2007.
    • Received October 12, 2006.
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