Netflix and Kill? Doctors Issue Binge Watching Warning

July 27, 2016 | Updated: 8:59 a.m., July 27, 2016

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Beauty shots of Netflix corporate headquarter campus

If you’re a fan of Netflix, Amazon Prime or Hulu, keep reading. Turns out, binge-watching may kill you.

Researchers in Japan looked at the TV watching habits of over 86,000 people and found that, for every additional two hours of TV watching per day, the risk of a fatal pulmonary embolism was increased by 40 percent.  A pulmonary embolism is a blood clot in your lungs that traveled there from another part of the body– usually the legs.

Netflix actually studied how many hours people bing-watch. The result: about two hours per day.

Eye Opener interviewed ER doctor and medical expert Dr. James Pinckney to get some more perspective on this study.

Dr. Pinckney said TV watching increases inactivity, which can create a blood clot in your leg.

Some symptoms of a blood clot include swelling, redness and pain in your leg. Dr. Pinckney said it usually only happens in one leg– not both.  If you notice these signs, you should contact your doctor immediately.

Staying active while you’re watching TV is the key to avoiding this issue.


“I think you should treat the situation just like you’re on an airplane,” Dr. Pinckney explained. “You should flex your calves, get up to stretch the legs and make sure you’re not staying in the same position for a prolonged period of time.”

Usually Dr. Pinckney tells patients to get up during commercial breaks and move around; but Netflix doesn’t have commercials.

“With Netflix, you’ve got to pause every 30 minutes or so,” Dr. Pinckney said.


He says to use that time to walk around, and even do jumping jacks. Some health and fitness experts have suggested watching television while walking on a treadmill.

Listen to the entire interview with Dr. Pinckney below. Plus, hear what he has to say about the popular Pokemon Go game!

And for those of you who are still not afraid to binge watch after reading this story, check out our full list of everything coming and going from Netflix in August.