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Can J Econ. 2017 May;50(2):345-364. doi: 10.1111/caje.12261. Epub 2017 May 10.

Food and beverage television advertising exposure and youth consumption, body mass index and adiposity outcomes.

Author information

1
University of Illinois at Chicago.
2
Boston Public Health Commission.
3
American Medical Association.

Abstract

This study examined the relationships between exposure to food and beverage product television advertisements and consumption and obesity outcomes among youth. Individual-level data on fast-food and soft drink consumption and body mass index (BMI) for young adolescents from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study - Kindergarten Cohort (1998-1999) and adiposity measures for children from the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (2003-2004) were combined with designated market area (DMA) Nielsen media advertising ratings data. To account for unobserved individual-level and DMA-level heterogeneity, various fixed- and random-effects models were estimated. The results showed that exposure to soft drink and sugar-sweetened beverage advertisements are economically and statistically significantly associated with higher frequency of soft drink consumption among youth even after controlling for unobserved heterogeneity, with elasticity estimates ranging from 0.4 to 0.5. The association between fast-food advertising exposure and fast-food consumption disappeared once we controlled for unobservables. Exposure to cereal advertising was significantly associated with young adolescents' BMI percentile ranking but exposures to fast-food and soft drink advertisements were not. The results on adiposity outcomes revealed that children's exposure to cereal advertising was associated with both percent body and trunk fatness; fast-food advertising was significantly associated with percent trunk fatness and marginally significantly associated with percent body fatness; and, exposure to SSB advertising was marginally significantly associated with percent body and trunk fatness. The study results suggest that continued monitoring of advertising is important and policy debates regarding the regulation of youth-directed marketing are warranted.

PMID:
28947838
PMCID:
PMC5609717
[Available on 2018-05-01]
DOI:
10.1111/caje.12261
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