Weight Loss Tip: Avoid food commercials.

Avoid Food CommercialsAvoid Food Commercials

Food Commercials Increase Snacking.  

Every commercial we see on TV is directed at the sale of a product.  Every aspect of the commercial is planned to accentuate the product and tap into your subconscious to get you to buy the product.  Whether the commercial is for Doritos or Poptarts, the goal is to get you to buy a product that you do not need and is likely not good for you.  They are pretty much just want to make your wallet a little lighter and eating the “food” they advertise will expand your waistline.  

Commercials increase snacking behavior.   There is no arguing this fact.  One research study from China looked at TC commercials and a who paid adolescents and the level fo attention paid to comercials[1].  The results revealed that adolescents who pay more attention to commercials snack more and had a higher level of obesity.  Another study looked at snacking and TC watching and found that commercials “content of TV shows and commercials could also be a trigger to snack”[2].  There are plenty of other studies.  Most of us do not need to be reminded of the power of commercials because we have felt the pain of having a child throw a fit because you would not buy that sugary breakfast cereal.  

Personal responsibility is very important, but I would argue that you need to set yourself up for success and not have those foods in your house.  I try not to buy snacks advertised on TV.  It makes it hard to reach fro the bag if it is not in my house.  This way, the cues to snack won’t encourage me to make unhealthy choices unless I feel strong enough to drive to the store to buy them.  Food advertising increases consumption of products not in the presented advertisements also so shop wisely and pick healthy foods.  

Avoid Food Commercials

Avoid Food Commercials

[1]Parvanta et al., “Television Use and Snacking Behaviors Among Children and Adolescents in China.”
[2]Gore et al., “Television Viewing and Snacking.”
Gore, Stacy A, Jill A Foster, Vicki G DiLillo, Kathy Kirk, and Delia Smith West. “Television Viewing and Snacking.” Eating Behaviors. Elsevier BV, November 2003. doi: 10.1016/s1471-0153(03)00053-9 [Source]
Parvanta, Sarah A., Jane D. Brown, Shufa Du, Catherine R. Zimmer, Xinshu Zhao, and Fengying Zhai. “Television Use and Snacking Behaviors Among Children and Adolescents in China.” Journal of Adolescent Health. Elsevier BV, April 2010. doi: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2009.08.002
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About the Author

I am a family physician who has served in the US Army. In 2016, I found myself overweight, out of shape, and unhealthy, so I made a change to improve my health. This blog is the chronology of my path to better health and what I have learned along the way.

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