Study: Adult Video Gamers Fatter, More Depressed

US adult gamers are chubbier, less happy than non-gamers

A new study from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention working with Emory and Andrews Universities suggests the average US adult gamer is chubbier and less happy than the rest of the population. Apparently eschewing flea markets, churches, bowling alleys, sleepovers, and bingo night, they're also more dependent on the internet to make friends.

The average age of an "adult" gamer? 35, according to the study, a number that's been creeping up for years as those of us who grew up with Commodore and Atari and Pong carry the flag forward toward quadragenarianism.

The CDC-led study sampled responses from 500 adults aged 19 to 90 in the Seattle-Tacoma area, of which roughly 45 percent said they played video games. Of that 45 percent, male gamers had higher body-mass indexes (BMIs) and used the internet more than non-gamers, while female gamers reported higher incidence of depression and health issues. Both male and female gamers reportedly depend more on the internet when making new friends.

I'm not sure I see the upside/downside of the last point, and I'd argue whether "extroversion" is reducible to face-to-face activities. Isn't social engagement through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, instant messaging, email, etc. a form of extroversion ("outgoing," "sociable," "gregarious") too?

Unfortunately, the study doesn't appear to control for possibly related factors, say whether a respondent's career has any bearing on their physiological and mental well-being. Is there a correlation between career interest in computers and high technology and video gaming? If so, what about the sedentary nature of various technology-related jobs? So there's a correlation between adult male video game players and higher BMIs...could there be other explanatory correlations?

And what about those feelings of "depression"? Are they due to "withdrawal" symptoms as some- (without a shred of medical evidence, mind you) have claimed? Or could it be that games in at least some instances aid in highlighting the depressingly drone-like aspects of so many middle-class jobs? Do the games cause depression? Or simply reveal and/or highlight other elements of a person's life responsible for as much?

I can't discount the BMI claim if accurate. "Fat" isn't the new "robust." The bottom line fellas? Get off your duff and exercise.

Just not too much.

As they say, "everything in moderation."

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Matt Peckham

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Essentials

Mobile

Exec

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?