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Pediatr Diabetes. 2015 Aug;16(5):331-7. doi: 10.1111/pedi.12278. Epub 2015 Apr 21.

Food advertising to children and its effects on diet: review of recent prevalence and impact data.

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Department of Psychological Sciences, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK.


In the context of a global obesity epidemic that has led to an unprecedented burden of non-communicable disease, the role of food and beverage marketing to children has been scrutinised in numerous studies. This article discusses the broader concept of an obesity-promoting food environment, before reviewing key, recent (last 5 yr) international research findings with regard to both the prevalence and effects of food and beverage advertising on children's intake. Evidence relating to the two main avenues of food marketing exposure, television, and the Internet, is explored and consideration is given to the differences in consumer experience of these types of promotion. Despite methodological differences and the varying population samples studied, the outcomes are broadly consistent - food advertising is prevalent, it promotes largely energy dense, nutrient poor foods, and even short-term exposure results in children increasing their food consumption. Policymakers are implored to drive forward meaningful changes in the food environment to support healthier choices and reduce the incidence of obesity and related diseases. This article aims at providing an overview of recent developments in this field. After limiting the search to the last five full years 2009-2014, we searched the following databases: Web of Knowledge and PubMed (keyword search terms used: television, Internet, new media, food advertising, food marketing, children, food intake, energy intake, consumption, and combinations of these terms). In addition we used the references from the articles obtained by this method to check for additional relevant material.


Internet; advertising; children; food; television

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