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Junk-food advertising on TV and on the web, WHO recommendations

Junk-food advertising on TV and on the web contributes to aggravating the epidemic of diseases linked to obesity and overweight from an early age. Therefore, here are the recommendations of the WHO.

WHO-Europe, the office representing the World Health Organization in the European macro-region, has developed specific recommendations for monitoring. Member States should monitor the marketing of HFSS (High Fats, Sugars and Sodium) foods, particularly where it is aimed at minors.

HFSS foods - in jargon, junk food or junk food - are the ones that don't respond to nutritional profiles defined at WHO level. As overweight in children under the age of 5 doubled between 1990 and 2013 and is expected to double again in the next decade. Rigorous action is required.

Il European Parliament he in turn intervened, however, with mild measures compared to the seriousness of the phenomenon. Which in our small way we tried to show, with some examples of junk food social marketing that bombards our children and adolescents.

Junk-food advertising, the WHO Guidelines

The WHO Guidelines therefore indicate a harmonized method for measuring the impact of HFSS food marketing on television programs and digital media. In order to evaluate the effective invasion of uneducational contents, through which the consumption of inappropriate foods for a balanced diet is promoted. In view of the introduction of strict limits, for public health needs.

The Vienna Declaration of 2013 on Nutrition and Non-Communicable Diseases in the Health Context 2020 (1) is the starting point. The objectives and the path are instead those defined in the 2015-2020 WHO-Europe Action Plan on food and nutrition. (2).

Concrete needs, of social and economic importance, with respect to which the 12 years of work of the 'EU Platform for Action on Diet, Physical Activity and Health' have proved completely ineffective. As proof of theBig Food's inability to self-regulate, on the different fronts of marketing to kids and the reformulation of food in a healthy way.

The self-styled social responsibility of multinationals the food industry, even from this point of view, has failed. It's time for a change of pace.


(1) Vienna Declaration on Nutrition and Noncommunicable Diseases in the Context of Health 2020, Copenhagen, 2013, at http://www.euro.who.int/en/publications/policy-documents/vienna-declaration-on-nutrition- and-noncommunicable-diseases-in-the-context-of-health-2020

(2) European Food and Nutrition Action Plan 2015–2020, Copenhagen, 2014, at http://www.euro.who.int/en/publications/abstracts/european-food-and-nutrition-ac on-plan-20152020



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