Obese online gamer dies playing

By Wu Yong (China Daily)
Updated: 2007-02-28 07:14

SHENYANG: An obese young man from Northeast China's Liaoning Province has died after a marathon video games session.

The 26-year-old man, surnamed Zhang from Jinzhou, collapsed on February 24, the last day of the week-long Spring Festival holiday, after hours of non-stop online gaming.

A doctor from the Liaoning Medical College blamed "overwork and obesity" as the cause of Zhang's death.

An Internet addict, Zhang spent almost all his time playing online games during the seven-day holiday instead of sleeping and visiting relatives, his parents said.

Moreover, he weighed almost 150 kilograms, and his heart struggled to pump blood throughout his enormous body.

Zhang's story has shocked the local community.

"I am a little scared after reading the story of Zhang, because I did almost the same thing like him," said Wang Rui, a young photographer from an advertising company in Shenyang.

"I also played games for such a long time that I could hardly find time to sleep during the holiday.

"Now, I just can't drag my mind back to normal and feel rather tired."

Meng Xianyun, a doctor from China Medical University, said symptoms such as tiredness and the inability to concentrate properly were caused by "irregular lifestyle" excessive food and drinking and a lack of exercise during the holiday period.

"That's all fine for the festival, but do not ignore your health, especially those old and young people," Meng said.

Xu Yan, a female middle school teacher complained the "dull life" during the festival prompted many people to turn to computer games for entertainment.

"There are only two options: TV or computer. What else can I do in the holiday as all markets, KTV and cafeterias are shut down?" Xu said.

Liu Jie, an expert from local Shenyang Cultural and History Research Institute, urged the local government organize more "traditional activities" to entertain people during the festival.

(China Daily 02/28/2007 page5)

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