Advertising Junk Food to Children

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Advertising Junk Food to Children This essay will discuss whether the advertisements of junk food are reasonable to advertise and are there other aspects that help obesity to develop in children. Increasing rates of obesity appear to be common to the process of industrialisation and have been linked with many factors, including a more sedentary lifestyle and diets high in fat and sugars and an abundance of food. (Gordon, Richard, 2000) The number of children suffering from obesity has increased dramatically since the mid 1980’s in the UK. However this is not just a UK problem but also a global issue. Obesity is defined as ‘An abnormal accumulation of body fat usually 20% or more over an individual’s ideal body weight. Obesity is associated with the increased risk of illness, disability, and death.’ A large proportion of TV advertising targeted at children is for processed foods; the vast majority of this promotes foods high in fat, sugars or salt. The debate about food advertising and advertising viewed by children is one that has continued for many years. During that time a wealth of evidence has emerged to show that targeting advertising as a means of tackling childhood dietary, nutritional or weight gain problems is completely unjustifiable and ineffective. One of the most heavily studied areas of advertising’s cumulative effects is the impact of commercials on children’s eating habits. As noted above, commercials for sweets, snacks, and fast food are mainstays of the advertising targeting children. It is well documented... ... middle of paper ... ...n Review, 14 (1), 52 – 60 Lord, M. (2000), "Schools fight fat by teaching kids to eat their greens", U.S. News & World Report, 128 (17), 60 Marquis, S. (1994),”The Young Ones". Marketing, March 10, 22 - 23. Matorin, J. (2001),”Obesity awareness campaign needed, but regulators won't curb fast-food appetite". Nation's Restaurant News, August 27, 32. McGovern, C. (2002),”Brave new world. A clear and present danger". The Report, July 8, 56. Story, M. and Faulkner, P. (1990), "The prime time diet: a content analysis of eating behaviour and food messages in television programmes and commercials”. American Journal of Public Health, 80 (6) 738 - 740. Taras, H. L. and Gage, M. (1995),”Advertised foods on children's television". Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, 144, 649 -652.
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