Diabetes Health in the News Podcast: Are TV Ads Causing Families to Eat More Fast Food

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A recent study has found that fast food restaurant TV ads featuring free toys have a strong influence on families. Researchers examined 100 children between the ages of 3 and 7 and their parents. The parents were surveyed about a variety of things, including:

  • The TV channels their kids watched
  • Whether their kids asked to go to two national fast food chains, frequently advertised on those channels
  • Whether their children collected toys from those restaurant chains and
  • The frequency with which they visited those fast food restaurants

The results showed that when children watched specific channels with these advertisements, their families were more likely to eat at the fast food restaurants in question. Children were also more likely to be influenced by the advertisements if they watched TV during the day and had a TV in their bedroom.

These findings were published in The Journal of Pediatrics on October 30, 2015.

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