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Negative Impact Of Food Commercials On Toddlers

Update Date: Jan 20, 2017 07:40 AM EST

Toddlers may be fuzzy eaters, but studies reveal that food commercials greatly impact their appetite as they tend to eat more than what they usually consume if they'd get to see a catchy good advertisement. It may be great that the fussy eating toddler is finally grabbing a bite, but it was mentioned that these advertisements tend to do more harm than good in regards to the child's diet.

A study that was published in the American Academy of Pediatrics focused on the effects of TV food advertising among pre-schoolers. The first of its kind study revealed that food advertisements trigger young children to eat, even when they are not hungry.

Though it may seem like a positive impact as their appetite is triggered, experts noted however that the children are more interested in eating the food that is being shown in the ads such as sugary treats and junk food.

Jennifer A. Emond, Ph.D., assistant professor of biomedical data science at Dartmouth College who is one of the study authors stated that pre-schoolers in the United States are exposed to unhealthy eating habits at a young age through TV advertisement and print ads as mentioned in Healthline.

The researchers did a small study in regards to the pre-schoolers' eating habits. The research was participated by 60 pre-schoolers who were exposed to TV ads while the other watched "Sesame Street." Both groups were given unlimited snacks. They then came to the conclusion that the group of children that were exposed to food advertisement ate more snacks, and it was mentioned that they chose the ones that they saw, which turned out to be unhealthy corn chips.

 "An earlier study of 9- and 10-year-olds published in the Journal of Obesity showed similar results," Emond stated. "But they didn't just eat more in general, they ate more of" the advertised food."

Toddlers may be fuzzy eaters, making it important for parents to set up healthy eating habits for their toddlers. Obesity is continually taking its toll over the years, thus toddlers should be introduced to a healthy diet at a young age.

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