As the article was published recently on Jan 30 2009, the information is up-to-date. The author uses interview excerpts from professionals – Frederick J. Zimmerman from the Child Health Institute and Kimberly M. Thompson from the Harvard School of Public Health. Both institutes are highly reputable and influential in American health matters. Thus, they have the responsibility of presenting accurate information to the public.
In the article, Zimmerman states that heavy TV viewing, especially of food advertising makes a difference to children’s diets. I agree, as advertisements have the cumulative effect of portraying unhealthy food as desirable and this undermines efforts to encourage a healthy lifestyle. This potentially explains the result in a recent study by a Canadian medical publication where physical fitness programmes in schools do not appear to combat obesity . Such advertising promotes food that goes against recommended dietary requirements and in the case of Singapore, the negative trend presents an obstacle to the success of Health Education, Trim and Fit and other comprehensive wellness programmes in school. Furthermore, a report from UK’s Sustain, an alliance of campaigners for better food and farming, suggests that up to 90% of food advertisements shown during children’s commercial TV programming are products high in fat, sugar or salt. It is apparent that junk food advertisements are largely targeted