The scientific phenomenon of food can be categorized as junk and healthy food. Both of them provide a good and mouth-watering taste to the tongue. However, people who are sensitive about their health avoid junk food while others enjoy it because of its taste and the spices used in its making. The reason youngsters are attracted to junk food is that they do not get the actual flavors at their home and then they are less attracted to original and healthy food as compared to junk food. Another factor, which increases the production and demand of junk food, is television and print advertisements. These advertisements are so glamorous and attractive that young minds are attracted towards it and thus they start avoiding homemade or healthy food. Junk food not only includes candies, chocolates or chips but all kinds of fast food, drinks also belong to this category. Some people who are health conscious also avoid the street food as it can freight us with a delicious taste but its after affects are injurious to the human body. These television ads also bombard the teenagers with a will to try at least once the junk food shown in the ad. Through this, if he likes it and get attracted then he surely loses the nutritional value. Common symptoms of this sort of health problem are nausea, headache, pain in stomach and the most common is day-by-day fever. Scientists have however prepare several argumentative researches and papers on this issue but all in vain as they television and print media industry cannot ban these ads as it is a great source of their income however, scientists have recommended so far they by 2010 if these ads would not be banned then every second child of America would be facing mental and physical disorders.
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According to several web and book resources, it has been clearly stated that junk food is a sort of ‘ADDICTION’. As per a world estimate people of the USA and UK are much addicted to junk food as compared to other native countries. Children look older than their age, their mental level increases towards these things and they pay low attention tom all the happenings in their environment. We all have a good and live example of alcohol and all of its associated drinks, that when a person drinks it and becomes unconscious then he does not cares about anything or any person. This is addiction – various alcoholic drinks also belong to the category of junk food. People especially teenagers are attracted highly towards all these sorts of drinks just for their flavor etc.
Despite of thousands objections against junk food, books suggest, “As long as you eat a healthy, balanced diet, many experts believe that there’s nothing wrong with having junk food treats every now and then” (Cobb, 9, 2006)
Junk Food Ads
Kids watch fewer television ads then they did in 1977 a federal agency said on Friday.
A new Federal Trade Commission (FTC) found half of the ads for junk food are on the children program, double the number 30 years ago. Correcting an approach of the scientist that too much junk food ads causing obesity among the children. Children between the ages of 2 – 11 watch 5,500 food ads in 2004 about 9 percent from roughly 6,100 ads in 1977 and where as today youngsters view 40,000 ads per year – and it is increasing day by day. American companies spend about $15 billion annually on the marketing of such ads. Such ads are also being exposed in magazines, on the Internet, and in the schools. Children who watch 2-½ hours television per day saw 406 junk food ads during summer holidays. Weight problems in children have doubled in past few years, with an increase of 20-25 percent now estimated to be over weight or obese. (Wroe, n.p., 2003)
Arguments for Ban on Junk Food
Junk food advertising should be banned in order to reduce child hood obesity and over age drinking. Mr. Davey thinks that Junk food advertising should be banned to feel a change in the behavior of children because of advertising and the food children are used to. When healthy food is brought to the schools children don’t like it. It is not just about money and training of the school staff it is about a cultural shift involving children and the parents. Researchers from the University of Otago in Dunedin studied that over 1000 of children aged 3 to 26 found that children who watch more than two hours a day has higher levels of obesity, blood, cholesterol and smoking. As well as lower levels of physical fitness as while watching TV kids are not getting out and exercising and playing with other children playing out side and burning of those kilo joules. But during watching TV they are bombarded towards junk food ads with 0 nutritional value and lots of sugar and fats.
According to The Guardian “Media regulator Ofcom will ban advertising for foods high in fat, salt and sugar (HFSS) during all programmes aimed at under-16s as well as during shows such as The Simpsons, Friends and Hollyoaks, which have a higher than average proportion of children watching.” (Gibson and Smithers, n.p., 2006)
We can, however cannot decline all of the above facts, but considering the both sides of the picture we should have to consider that this ban could affect various organizations and businesses badly. The after effects of this ban can be described as follows:
- Firstly, as media plays a vital role in the production and popularity of the junk food products, if these ads would be banned then they would have to face a great loss and through this may be we will have to say goodbye to all newspapers and TV channels.
- As 75% income of the TV channels and newspapers depend on these ads, they will be affected but with them, the product will also get a share in the decline act as without the glamorous TV and paper ads, the production of these junk food products will be badly affected.
- Media claims that it has no share in the rising production and demand of the junk food, which is somehow true. After all they have to run their organizations and to curb poverty and unemployment they have to publish these ads.
- Another factor in all this is the irresponsibility of parents. If parents have a check and balance on all the activities of their children then this problem could have a better solution.
- Lastly, banning these ads would not work, as through this ban billions of people would be unemployed who work for electronic and print media. This problem is of teenagers and the solution lies only in the parent’s hands. Banning anything would not work, as children will somehow manage to buy these products unless they have a strict eye on them.
At last it is concluded that however, this junk food matter is a very complicated and serious one but the people using it must have enough knowledge to bear and resemble its after affects with the healthy food. Banning anything would not work, as we can see in the case of drugs. They are banned but somehow drug addicts manage to produce them by illegal means. So a widespread of knowledge would work – it is only limited to scientists and their surroundings. These sorts of knowledge should be widespread among illiterate people, as they could better know that what they are using and what can they face by the usage of the junk food. Otherwise, the ads cannot be banned as this ban would lead much shelter less and hungry and this is not possible at any cost. According to a journal article “A new study by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has found that American schools are starting to make progress in the battle against junk food and promoting physical activity. However, the report concludes that considerable more progress is needed to improve the health and well-being of American students.” (US Schools Showing Modest Gains In Battle Against Junk Food, n.p., 2007)