More time spent outdoors is likely to stave off the risk of myopia or nearsightedness in children and adolescents, new research says.
In parts of Asia, more than 80 percent of the population is nearsighted, more so than in the 1970s, says the study.
These findings are based on analysis of eight studies on outdoor time and myopia in children and adolescents, representing 10,400 participants in total.
Justin Sherwin’s team from the University of Cambridge concluded that for each additional hour spent outdoors per week, the chance of myopia dropped by approximately two percent.
Nearsighted children spent on average 3.7 fewer hours per week outdoors than those who either had normal vision or were farsighted, according to a statement from the university.
“Increasing children’s outdoor time could be a simple and cost-effective measure with important benefits for their vision and general health,” said study co-author Anthony Khawaja.
These findings were presented at the 115th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology.