Preliminary Proposed Nutrition Principles to Guide Industry Self-Regulatory Efforts, Project No. P094513
Children are exposed to more than 10,000 food related advertisements each year and many of them are for junk food. It is unrealistic to expect that a 1st grader would be able to differentiate between an ad for a healthy food and an ad for a high calorie food with little nutritional benefit. Children are not always aware of what is best for them, and we need to stop tricking them into thinking that fluorescent colored foods that come in vacuum sealed packages or are handed to them by a clown are what they need to be happy. Ultimately, the child is not the one buying the food and bringing it home, but the less a child is exposed to the expert marketing of the food industry, the less likely they are to request junk foods. Banning ads for foods with low nutritional value and high caloric value is just one step towards helping our children make healthier choices. Unless carrots, apples and whole grains get as much screen time as fast food and fruit snacks, marketing of unhealthy foods to children should be regulated, if not banned.