Monday, November 30, 2009

Understanding Food Advertising

Billions of dollars are spent each year on advertising food, and much of this is focused on specific markets. Food ads for breakfast cereals and junk food, for example, focus largely on the children’s market. Toys, comic books, giveaways, and polished commercials can hinder young people from making independent judgments on how to eat a balanced diet. Instead, their choices may rely on the direction of advertisers. TV advertising plays a prominent role, where cartoons featuring food commercials dominate children’s programming. Most of these emphasize PROCESSED FOODS—low in nutrients and high in CALORIES, SUGAR, SALT, and FAT. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) discovered that less than 3 percent of advertising during children’s programs focuses on healthful food, such as fruit and milk. The AAP concluded that there is a direct link between commercials promoting high-calorie food and health problems, and in 1991 recommended a ban on food commercials geared toward children.
The Better Business Bureau’s Children’s Advertising Review Unit was founded in 1972. Composed of representatives from the media, ad agencies, and others, its goal is to monitor truth in advertising in radio, TV, and the printed word for children up to the age of 12, according to self-regulating guidelines. It will review material before it is publicized upon request. The group provides a forum for information exchange and relies on a panel of academic professionals to provide expertise on the impact of images on children.

Understanding Adulterated Food

A food is classified as adulterated if it contains extraneous material, dangerous amounts of poisons or filth, or if it has been processed or stored under unsanitary conditions. In terms of food for interstate commerce, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration monitors environmental contaminants, toxins from microorganisms, bacterial levels, and potentially harmful substances. Since it is impossible for food to be 100 percent pure, tolerances have been set for each type of contaminant. Very hazardous materials can be ruled so dangerous that no amount should be detected (a “zero tolerance”).

Understanding Adipose tissue (body fat, depot fat)

Fat storage is A specialized function of adipose tissue, and it represents The major fuel depot of the body; it is as Essential to normal function as any other tissue. Body fat serves other important functions: It insulates The body against low environmental temperatures And serves as a shock absorber. Typically, fat Stored in adipose tissue represents 15 percent to 20 Percent of men’s weight and 20 percent to 25 percent Of women’s average weight. Women usually Have more fat than men because fat is an important Energy reserve during pregnancy and lactation. Adipose tissue synthesizes fat after a high carbohydrate Meal in response to the hormone INSULIN. During FASTING, STARVATION, or STRESS, a second Hormone EPINEPHRINE (adrenaline) signals ADIPOCYTES (fat cells) to break down stored fat into FATTY ACIDS, which are released into the bloodstream. They are rapidly absorbed and oxidized for energy By muscles. In contrast, the brain relies on blood Sugar to meet its energy needs.
The fact that an adult can consume approximately Two pounds of food a day (or 700 pounds of Food a year) with only small changes in body fat Indicates how well the body regulates weight when The calorie intake matches the total body requirements. Of course, common experience suggests that Body fat can increase. For example, fat accumulation Often accounts for the weight gain of middleaged Americans. Older people tend to EXERCISE less And the metabolic rate slows with aging. An individual’s Optimal body fat at any age depends upon Many factors, including inheritance, body build, Sex, and age. Standard HEIGHT/WEIGHT TABLES or the BODY MASS INDEX can be used to estimate an appropriate Body weight for an individual.
Excessive body fat is not healthy for many reasons.
OBESITY carries with it the increased risk of CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE, HYPERTENSION, and some Forms of CANCER. It is interesting to note that the Distribution of body fat plays a role in defining the Risk for heart disease. Abdominal fat (the “spare Tire” profile) carries a greater risk for cardiovascular Disease than fat accumulated around hips and Thighs (the “pear” profile).
The general approach to losing fat stored in adipose Tissue is exercising and eating low-fat, highadipose Fiber meals, while decreasing caloric intake. Dieting Without exercise decreases muscle mass (not desirable) As well as the fat in adipose tissue, and the Weight regained after a crash diet is mostly fat (also Not desired). Cycles of dieting and not dieting also Cause loss of muscle mass. Muscle burns more ENERGY per pound than fat, so DIET cycling may Increase the difficulty of losing weight permanently. The number of fat cells in adipose tissue—
The storage bags themselves—cannot be lost by Dieting or exercise. The only way to lose fat cells of Adipose tissue is by LIPOSUCTION, a surgical procedure.