Date of Conferral





Public Health


Richard Jimenez


Time with media screens (television, computers, videogames, cell phones, and tablets) is the primary activity of youth, second only to sleeping, and represents a major risk factor for cardiovascular diseases (CVD). Additionally, the populations with highest rates of screen time are also those most at risk of CVD from genetic predisposition (i.e., Blacks, Hispanics). The purpose of this descriptive, correlational study, based on cross-sectional analysis of archived data from the 2009 - 2010 NHANES for United States youth, newborn to 20 years old, was to determine whether the combination of media screen time with genetic background is a better predictor of CVD than either factor alone. The theoretical framework was the social ecological theory of disease distribution. The relationship between media screen time, genetic background, and CVD risk factor was determined using binary logistic regression. Results of this study indicated that the relationship between ethnicity, gender, and type/duration of exposure to media screen is important to predict the CVD risk factors C-reactive protein (CRP), triglycerides, and diastolic blood pressure. Interventions that limit exposure total screen time will reduce the risk of increased blood pressure among all races. However, culturally relevant intervention should be designed specifically for non-Hispanic Blacks, other Hispanics, and other race. These ethnicities have the highest propensity to increase in blood pressure, CRP, and triglycerides and also spend the largest amount of time in front of the media screen. Results from this study may help to promote policies and initiatives to limit screen time that are culturally relevant and more focused.

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