Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

A content analysis of children’s television advertising: focus on food and oral health

  • Maria Morgan (a1), Ruth Fairchild (a2), Andrea Phillips (a1), Kate Stewart (a3) and Lindsay Hunter (a1)...

Abstract

Objectives

To analyse the nature and content of advertising during children’s popular television viewing times with the specific aims of (i) identifying the proportion of advertising time devoted to confectionery and potentially cariogenic products (those which readily give rise to dental caries, more commonly known as tooth decay); and (ii) determining whether there is a variation in the advertisement of confectionery and other high-sugar products within children’s school holiday time v. outside holiday time.

Method

In five separate one-week periods, the output of the four most popular British children’s commercial television channels was video-recorded during the most popular viewing times for children. In total, 503 h of television were recorded and analysed.

Results

Analysis of the recordings revealed that 16·4 % of advertising time was devoted to food products; 6·3 % of all advertising time was devoted to potentially cariogenic products. Sugared cereals were the most commonly advertised high-sugar product, followed by sweetened dairy products and confectionery (χ2 = 6524·8, df = 4, P < 0·001). The advertisement of confectionery and high-sugar foods appeared to be influenced by school holidays.

Conclusions

Health-care professionals should be aware of the shift away from the advertisement of confectionery towards the promotion of foods that might be considered healthier but contain large amounts of hidden sugar.

    • Send article to Kindle

      To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

      Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

      Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

      A content analysis of children’s television advertising: focus on food and oral health
      Available formats
      ×

      Send article to Dropbox

      To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

      A content analysis of children’s television advertising: focus on food and oral health
      Available formats
      ×

      Send article to Google Drive

      To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

      A content analysis of children’s television advertising: focus on food and oral health
      Available formats
      ×

Copyright

Corresponding author

*Corresponding author: Email morganmz@cardiff.ac.uk

References

Hide All
1.Pitts, NB, Boyles, J, Nugent, ZJ, Thomas, N & Pine, C (2006) The dental caries experience of 11-year-old children in Great Britain. Surveys co-ordinated by the British Association for the Study of Community Dentistry in 2004/2005. Community Dent Health 23, 4457.
2.Pitts, NB, Boyles, J, Nugent, ZJ, Thomas, N & Pine, C (2007) The dental caries experience of 5-year-old children in Great Britain (2005/6). Surveys co-ordinated by the British Association for the Study of Community Dentistry. Community Dent Health 24, 5963.
3.Jebb, SA, Rennie, KL & Cole, TJ (2004) Prevalence of overweight and obesity among young people in Great Britain. Public Health Nutr 7, 461465.
4.James, PT, Leach, R, Kalamara, E & Shayeghi, M (2001) The worldwide obesity epidemic. Obes Res 9, 228S233S.
5.Kantovitz, KR, Pascon, FM, Rontani, RM & Gavião, MB (2006) Obesity and dental caries – a systematic review. Oral Health Prev Dent 4, 137144.
6.Locker, D (2000) Deprivation and oral health: a review. Community Dent Oral Epidemiol 28, 161169.
7.Armstrong, J, Dorosty, AR & Reilly, JJ (2003) Coexistence of social inequalities in undernutrition and obesity in preschool children; population based cross-sectional study. Arch Dis Child 88, 671675.
8.Dibsdall, LA, Lambert, N, Bobbin, RF & Frewer, LJ (2003) Low-income consumers’ attitudes and behaviour towards access, availability and motivation to eat fruit and vegetables. Public Health Nutr 6, 159168.
9.Vanhala, M, Vanhala, P, Kumpusalo, E, Halonen, P & Takala, J (1998) Relation between obesity from childhood to adulthood and the metabolic syndrome: population based study. BMJ 317, 319.
10.Rugg-Gunn, AJ (1993) Nutrition and Dental Health. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
11.Food Standards Agency (2007) Advertising to children. Key facts. http://www.food.gov.uk/healthiereating/advertisingtochildren/nutlab/nutrientprofilefacts (accessed March 2008).
12.Wardle, J (2007) Eating behaviour and obesity. Obes Rev 8, Suppl. 1, 7375.
13.Lobstein, T & Dibb, S (2005) Evidence of a possible link between obesogenic food advertising and child overweight. Obes Rev 6, 203208.
14.Austin, MJ & Reed, ML (1999) Targeting children online: Internet advertising ethics issues. J Consumer Marketing 16, 590602.
15.Hastings, G, Stead, M, McDermott, L, Forsyth, A, MacKintosh, AM, Rayner, M, Godfrey, C, Caraher, M & Angus, K (2003) Review of Research on the Effects of Food Promotion to Children. Final Report. Glasgow: Centre for Social Marketing.
16.Halford, JC, Boyland, EJ, Hughes, GM, Stacey, L, McKean, S & Dovey, TM (2007) Beyond-brand effect of television food advertisements on food choice in children: the effects of weight status. Public Health Nutr (Epublication ahead of print version).
17.Valkenburg, PM (2000) Media and youth consumerism. J Adolesc Health 27, Suppl. 2, 5256.
18. Livingstone S (2004) A commentary on the research evidence regarding the effects of food promotion on children. Prepared for the Research Department of the Office of Communications (OFCOM). http://www.ofcom.org.uk/research/tv/reports/food_ads/appendix1.pdf (accessed March 2008).
19.Signorielli, N & Lears, M (1992) Television and children’s conceptions of nutrition: unhealthy messages. Health Commun 4, 245257.
20.Ofcom (2007) The future of children’s television programming. http://www.ofcom.org.uk/consult/condocs/kidstv/kidstvresearch.pdf (accessed March 2008).
21.Rodd, HD & Patel, V (2005) Content analysis of children’s television advertising in relation to dental health. Br Dent J 199, 710712.
22.OFCOM (2004) BARB TV Viewing Data 2003. http://www.ofcom.org.uk/research/tv/reports/food_ads/appendix3.pdf (accessed June 2008).
23.Lawlor, DA, Ebrahim, S & Davey Smith, G (2002) Socioeconomic position in childhood and adulthood and insulin resistance: cross sectional survey using data from British women’s heart and health study. BMJ 325, 805807.
24.Ofcom (2007) Television advertising of food and drink products to children. Final statement. http://www.ofcom.org.uk/consult/condocs/foodads_new/statement/statement.pdf (accessed March 2007).
25.BARB (2006) Weekly Viewing Summary for 24 September 06. http://www.barb.co.uk/viewingsummary/weekreports.cfm?report=multichannel&requesttimeout=500&flag=viewingsummary.htm (accessed 11 October 2006).
26.Food Standards Agency (2005) Eat Well Be Well. Your guide to healthy eating. http://www.breakfastcereal.org/eatwell_leaflet.pdf (accessed March 2008).
27.Bland, JM (2000) An Introduction to Medical Statistics, 3rd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
28.Chestnutt, IG & Ashraf, FJ (2002) Television advertising of foodstuffs potentially detrimental to oral health – a content analysis and comparison of children’s and primetime broadcasts. Community Dent Health 19, 8689.
29.Advertising Standards Authority (2008) The Advertising of Food to Children. http://www.asa.org.uk/NR/rdonlyres/F60412F1-6C6E-40B0-9A82-91672BA4B840/0/Foodheaded.pdf (accessed March 2008).
30.Caraher, M, Landon, J & Dalmeny, K (2006) Television advertising and children: lessons from policy development. Public Health Nutr 9, 596605.
31.Yngve, A (2007) Overview. In Public Health Nutrition: From Principles to Practice, pp. 13 [M Lawrence and T Worsley, editors]. Milton Keynes: Open University Press.
32.Halifax (2006) Annual Halifax Pocket Money Survey. http://www.hbosplc.com/media/includes/15_%2004_%2006_%20Pocket_%20Money_%20Survey_%202006%20_%20National.doc (accessed March 2007).
33.Consumers Association (2006) Food Fables. Exploring Industry Myths on Responsible Food Marketing to Kids. Campaign Report. London: Consumers Association.
34.National Audit Office (2006) Tackling Childhood Obesity – First Steps. http://www.nao.org.uk/publications/nao_reports/05-06/0506801.pdf (accessed July 2007).

Keywords

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed