Is Advertising Making Us Fat?

Posted on: November 2nd, 2010 by Charlene Giovanelli

Does advertising of food and packaging influence your buying patterns and diet?

We are bombarded on a daily basis by advertising, enticing us as consumers to buy the new and latest products.

If a certain food product is presented in an eye-catching packaging does this make you buy the product?

It’s very difficult for all of us to eat healthy especially if we are being enticed everywhere we go. There was a debate on BBC this week, discussing the worldwide epidemic of obesity and the food industry’s role in contributing to obesity.

The World Health Organisation has cautioned the industry from putting cartoons on packaging to entice children to buy unhealthy products, as this can contribute to the rise in obesity. Other topics that were discussed, was the labelling of food. Does food labelling need to become simple and easier to understand, so that we as consumers are able to make an informed decision on purchasing the food item?

It takes a lot of will power and discipline to ignore the advertising and to buy the healthier food option. We have all been at the till, paying for our groceries and then we grab a slab of chocolate – that’s impulse buying. I personally think that at all the tills; the sweets and chocolate should be removed and be replaced with nuts, dried fruit, fruits and vegetables. This will hopefully ensure that impulse buying will be on healthier options than junk food.

To fight obesity is going to take a collective effort from the industry as well as us, as consumers. We need to educate ourselves on what are healthy options and not be influenced by advertising.

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