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Computers, harmful habits, radiation, myopia

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created October 14, 2010 at 5:54 PM

I am very happy that this online community exists and understand the unlimited communication benefits of the net, but wonder about the possibly harmful effects of computer radiation with prolonged exposure. There is a new kind of A new kind of "AA" group for computer/internet addicts, which really made me think that something in the cultural subconscious is very wrong. I love being able to communicate in this format with other paleos, but sometimes feel a twinge of remorse that we must communicate or set things up through electronic devices. Also, I was reading that myopia can be caused by reading too much or not exercising the eyes from an early age. Computer time usage in kids is increasing to the level that everyone in the next generation could have it ( tongue in cheek, but possilby). How can we counter these problems and revert back in some way to the good old ways of communication through paleo principles?

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on August 13, 2011
at 07:50 PM

Same here. I thought that heavy computer use was the cause of me not sleeping well, but as soon as I cut out fruits and nuts and starchy things (quinoa, sweet potatoes, ...) I started sleeping great.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on October 17, 2010
at 12:49 AM

Yeah, I have LCD. And I have no problems going to sleep, so I don't worry about sleep that much.

5841391284e7af8c495c54bd90d3a795

(2764)

on October 15, 2010
at 06:48 AM

You *do* have an LCD monitor, right, Eva? *MUCH* lower radiation than CRTs. I'd venture to guess that computers cause more health problems via sleep disruption (bright lights before bedtime and staying up too late *ahem*) than from radiation damage. I should have turned this off an hour ago!

C90eecdd76cf57a387095fa49de23807

(960)

on October 15, 2010
at 01:39 AM

that is, for *additional* information on myopia. I understand that it can be caused by over-reading. On the internet AND of books. But the anthropological evidence (to me) seems to point much more drastically to other causes, such as the SAD.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on October 14, 2010
at 06:33 PM

This longing to get back to basics communication-wise reminded me of that Foster's commercial where all these grizzled Aussie dudes are calling at each other from a distance by bellowing, "OY!" and the Aussie voice-over says, "Social networking."

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2 Answers

1
62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on October 15, 2010
at 02:46 AM

When I researched it, I found zero evidence that myopia is correlated with reading or eye usage in general. That was just a guess/old wive's tail to explain why city folks had worse eyes than country folk. The guess was that city folk spent more time reading. But there were other differences like diet in the city folks that better explain it. Using your eyes or having tired eyes does not in any way effect the shape of your lens or the longterm ability of your eye muscles to focus. Later, when TV was invented, they started blaming it more on tv than on reading. There is no evidence for either.

Some evidence does exist that radiation might increase chances of cancer though. I would not be surprised. However, I do not plan to give up computers and electronic media. It's a quality of life thing. Living a tad longer will not be worth it if my quality of life is greatly diminished. So I just try to do tons of other healthy living things that will lesson my chances of cancer, and hope that all that computer radiation will be thus counteracted. Besides, they say happiness is great for health, so if computers make me happy, maybe that alone will make up for the radiation! ;-)

5841391284e7af8c495c54bd90d3a795

(2764)

on October 15, 2010
at 06:48 AM

You *do* have an LCD monitor, right, Eva? *MUCH* lower radiation than CRTs. I'd venture to guess that computers cause more health problems via sleep disruption (bright lights before bedtime and staying up too late *ahem*) than from radiation damage. I should have turned this off an hour ago!

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on October 17, 2010
at 12:49 AM

Yeah, I have LCD. And I have no problems going to sleep, so I don't worry about sleep that much.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on August 13, 2011
at 07:50 PM

Same here. I thought that heavy computer use was the cause of me not sleeping well, but as soon as I cut out fruits and nuts and starchy things (quinoa, sweet potatoes, ...) I started sleeping great.

0
C90eecdd76cf57a387095fa49de23807

(960)

on October 15, 2010
at 01:37 AM

I'd check out this question for information on myopia: http://paleohacks.com/questions/11935/the-sad-and-myopia#axzz12O33q2OZ

As for addictions, well. There are addiction groups for a whole lot of things, and I'm not surprised that as our society evolves, and as we are introduced to new things, media, stimuli, etc, we can become addicted to these new things. Alochol is an age old addiction, for example. But TV? Not so much. Pornography? Also, well, sort-of newish. Anyway,I lament a lot of things about the way the world's evolved, but there's not much I can do about it other than be informed and live how I think is best.

That said, if you're upset about internet usage, why not use it less? I like to only "allow" myself to use the computer every other day, for example. This allows me to get that enriching experience of creating activities, such as playing games with my family, instead of just flipping open my laptop and letting the web take care of me.

BUT I am also super grateful for the internet. without it, I would have never discovered paleo! Or met any of you! Or have been able to communicate with my mother while living in Taiwan. So.. for me its all about moderation. I like to be informed about our past, and to live as organically as possible, but also to take advantage of the good stuff of modern society. I have a friend who's moving to Australia to live with a tribe. He thinks its the most organic way to live, and I'm glad for him that he's doing it. But basically it's our world, and all we can do is navigate it as best we can.

C90eecdd76cf57a387095fa49de23807

(960)

on October 15, 2010
at 01:39 AM

that is, for *additional* information on myopia. I understand that it can be caused by over-reading. On the internet AND of books. But the anthropological evidence (to me) seems to point much more drastically to other causes, such as the SAD.

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