What are some unintended long-term health consequences of behavior changes resulting from technological advances?
What are some of the long range consequences of the behavioral changes resulting from technological advances in the past 100 years?
Consider a behavior comparison between the normal life of a human 100 years ago to the normal life of a human today. We have heard of all the medical advances that increase the quality and length of our lives, and all the carcinogenic new toxins and chemicals that have become part of our lives. Life spans are increasing, so in general, the trade-offs might be considered favorable, but I am very curious about studies and knowledge relative to consequences of long term subtle behavior changes that reduce our alignment with nature. Specifically, changes new technology has made to our behaviors.
100 years ago we spent more time exposed to the weather. Today, more of us work indoors, where the environment is controlled and the air filtered (indoor air is much more polluted than outdoor air ).
100 years ago our sleep patterns were a more aligned with nature, with the duration of the day closer to day light. I am sure everyone knows someone that would sleep until noon everyday if they could and stay up very late at night. These folks existed 100 years ago, but the percentage of adults, and in particular children has increased.
100 years ago, showering every day was uncommon. Today, it is probably the norm. What effect does this have on your skin?
100 years ago, sitting down for 12 hours a day, spending 10 hours in front of a computer, or 4 hours reclined in a La-Z-boy would be very uncommon. Today it is not uncommon.
100 years ago, we walked or rode bikes everywhere. Today, we spend more time sitting in planes, trains, and automobiles.
The recent relationship between sitting and life expectancy was a surprise to me. I am very curious to see if the long-term effects of other subtle behavior changes are being studied.
Anyone have a story of an unexpected consequence of a behavior that has changed as a result of technology?