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TV Ads Linked to Childhood Obesity

TV Ads Linked to Childhood Obesity

An impressive new study was released in the American Journal of Public Health linking television viewing to childhood obesity.  Australian researchers reviewed television food advertising throughout Australia, Asia, Western Europe, and North and South America, to determine the researchers assessed children’s exposure to advertising of unhealthy food items.  In all countries examined, the researchers found that the number of unhealthy foods advertised were highest during the hours children were most likely to be watching TV.

While it may seem likely that hours in front of the television are hours that kids could be more active, research by scientists at The University of California, Los Angeles came to similar conclusions as the Australian scientists:  television advertising is to blame.   The scientists found that the number of advertisements for unhealthy foods was highest during the hours children watch TV—in all countries tested.   The scientists concluded that getting children to reduce their hours of television viewing was an important factor in reducing childhood obesity.

Since the 70s, obesity among children ages 6 to 11 has tripled.  Isn’t it time for food manufacturers to step up their level of social responsibility?  Don’t our children deserve the best start in life?  That includes healthy foods that grow healthy bodies.  Marketing sugar- and chemical-laden “foods” to children lacks integrity and accountability.  Is it any wonder so many children are overweight or obese:  display unhealthy foods while they watch TV and…surprise, that’s what they want to eat.  It’s like taking candy from a baby, or, um, GIVING candy to a baby.

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Read more: Babies, Children, Diet & Nutrition, Eating for Health, Family, Fitness, General Health, Michelle Schoffro Cook, Smart Shopping, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD

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Michelle Schoffro Cook

Michelle Schoffro Cook, MSc, RNCP, ROHP, DNM, PhD is an international best-selling and 17-time book author and board-certified doctor of natural medicine, whose works include: 60 Seconds to Slim, Weekend Wonder Detox, Healing Recipes, The Vitality Diet, Allergy-Proof, Arthritis-Proof, Total Body Detox, The Life Force Diet, The Ultimate pH Solution, The 4-Week Ultimate Body Detox Plan, and her new book The Probiotic Promise. Subscribe to her free e-magazine World's Healthiest News at to receive monthly health news, tips, recipes and more. Follow her on Twitter @mschoffrocook and Facebook.


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6:18AM PST on Feb 4, 2013

copy & paste Mrs S.

3:04AM PST on Feb 4, 2013


6:10PM PDT on Aug 17, 2012


9:10AM PDT on Aug 15, 2012

Unfortunatly junk food is addictive, so it does look like these companies are trying to get everyone hooked from a very young age :-(

3:45AM PDT on Aug 14, 2012

more playtime, not T.V. time

2:31AM PDT on Aug 14, 2012

Thanks for sharing!

6:34AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012


7:04PM PDT on Sep 28, 2011

I'm sure the ads play some roll but I don't think it's the ads so much as it is the fact that the child is sitting there in front of the TV instead of running around outside.

4:39AM PDT on Aug 8, 2011

I was an obese child, but there were no TV ads in Poland at that time.

7:17AM PDT on May 30, 2011

Thanks. Kids don't play outside anymore. Their lives are too scheduled.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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Nice infographics ;)

Helpful information, thanks.

thanks for the info

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