Online gaming is a booming industry, which brings with it a host of health risks.
The industry is enjoying a significant upturn in revenue and was worth $21bn through 2020, according to Statista. That figure is likely to increase in 2021 due to the pandemic and the resumption of some big online gaming tournaments, such as Dota 2’s The International. It has a $40m prize fund, which makes it an aspiration for many. Other titles offer smaller rewards, but the goal is the same; people making a living through their controller.
The online poker industry is another key driver in online gaming’s success. As far back as 2003, online poker gave players at home a chance to qualify for the World Series of Poker. Chris Moneymaker won that tournament and sparked a surge in players looking to play online. The World Series of Poker 2021 runs until November 23 and still delivers players at home aspirations of success and wealth. With legislation relaxing in the US, and several states offering legalized online poker, more players than ever are hunched over screens, waiting for their royal flush to come up.
With so much interest in taking part in online gaming, how can you combat the ill effects? Remaining sedentary for long periods is unhealthy, and the nature of games often means poor food choices are made because they are the convenient option, and players put themselves at risk from long-term problems. Combatting those is relatively straightforward if you follow these handy hints.
It is estimated that an hour of movement per day can combat the effects of sitting down for work, and the same applies to online gaming. Every hour you should aim to take ten minutes for a break, not to slouch elsewhere in the house, but to become active. Walk around the yard, do a few push-ups, even climb the stairs a couple of times. Doing any of these actions will cause the blood to pump around your body, promoting better health.
Use a Grip Strengthener
If your online gaming session includes holding a controller for long periods, you could be at risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome. That’s not a good thing, it requires surgery, but you can help prevent it. During your short gaming breaks, using a grip strengthener will help improve the muscles in your hands and wrists and work those that might be strained or neglected during gaming. If you’re on a keyboard playing online poker, you might even use the strengthener to take away some of your anxiety and stress during play.
As we explored in our article on ‘The Benefits of Taking Multisupplements Daily’, you can improve your health by adding a robust supplement plan to your health regimen. Multivitamins help prevent certain conditions, such as heart attacks and heart disease, and they’re proven to improve cognitive function. They also improve eye health, which is incredibly important when watching a screen for prolonged periods. These small wins might be the difference between winning with a losing hand or losing with a winning hand.
It’s easy to grab energy drinks during gaming, under the misconception they’ll help you stay sharp, but you could be doing more harm than good. They’re full of sugar and caffeine and can leave you irritable, anxious and bloated. Try to drink water during your sessions as it will not only keep you hydrated but is 100% good for your body. It is also proven to improve energy levels and brain function. The same goes for the snacks you consume; avoid chips and candy and instead go for something equally as easy but much better for you. A bowl of pulses, seeds and berries will do the trick, and they’re much better for your health.