Fruits and vegetables are often displayed in the popular Swedish children’s TV show Bolibompa, but there are also plenty of high-sugar foods. A new study from the University of Gothenburg explores how food is portrayed in children’s TV programmes as well as the link between young children’s TV viewing, dietary habits and weight status.
Steingerdur Olafsdottir’s doctoral thesis focuses on the presence of food in the popular Swedish children’s TV show Bolibompa. Healthy foods dominated in the Swedish-produced parts of the show, whereas the other parts also displayed high-calorie and low-nutrient foods. Olafsdottir analysed all foods and drinks presented in about 25 hours of material broadcasted over a period of five months, along with the context in which the food items were displayed or referred to.
Cookies, candy, ice cream
Fruits and vegetables were shown quite frequently in the show, although usually more often in the background. One out of every five food items displayed was high in calories and low in nutrients, such as cookies, candy and ice cream. These types of food were often displayed actively, by somebody eating or holding it. Moreover, they were more commonly shown together with children than with adults.
‘This means that there’s potential for a more health-promoting approach in the production of TV shows for children.’ says Olafsdottir.
Exposure to commercials
Olafsdottir also studied the connection between young children’s screen habits, dietary habits and weight status. She found an association between children’s TV viewing, in terms of both time in front of the TV and exposure to commercials, and consumption of sweet beverages. Children whose parents did not limit their exposure to TV commercials had a twice as high likelihood of drinking sweet beverages on a regular basis compared with other kids.
‘This means that it may be possible to influence children’s eating habits via their TV habits. There was also a link between TV viewing and obesity and the likelihood of increases in BMI and the waist-to-height ratio,’ says Olafsdottir.
Increased likelihood of overweight among children
The thesis is partly based on data from the European research project IDEFICS (Identification and Prevention of Dietary and Lifestyle-Induced Health Effects in Children and Infants), concerning the dietary habits and lifestyle of 2-9 year old children. Eight European countries participated during the period 2007-2010: Sweden, Estonia, Germany, Belgium, Hungary, Italy, Spain and Cyprus.
Previous research has shown that TV and computer use may increase the likelihood of overweight and poor dietary habits in children. Different mechanisms behind the links have been presented: sedentary behaviour, eating while viewing and effects of TV commercials.
Read the doctoral thesis: https://gupea.ub.gu.se/handle/2077/34913
For more information:
Steingerdur Olafsdottir, firstname.lastname@example.org
Steingerdur Olafsdottir presented her doctoral thesis Television and Food in the Lives of Young Children at the Department of Food and Nutrition, and Sport Science, University of Gothenburg in April 4, 2014.
Torsten Arpi | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
Brands are Perceived in the Same Way as Faces
28.08.2015 | Leuphana Universität Lüneburg
“Bank & Zukunft 2015” trend survey highlights the need for banks to reform business models
21.08.2015 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Arbeitswirtschaft und Organisation IAO
A University of Oklahoma astrophysicist and his Chinese collaborator have found two supermassive black holes in Markarian 231, the nearest quasar to Earth, using observations from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope.
The discovery of two supermassive black holes--one larger one and a second, smaller one--are evidence of a binary black hole and suggests that supermassive...
A team of European researchers have developed a model to simulate the impact of tsunamis generated by earthquakes and applied it to the Eastern Mediterranean. The results show how tsunami waves could hit and inundate coastal areas in southern Italy and Greece. The study is published today (27 August) in Ocean Science, an open access journal of the European Geosciences Union (EGU).
Though not as frequent as in the Pacific and Indian oceans, tsunamis also occur in the Mediterranean, mainly due to earthquakes generated when the African...
In mountainous regions earthquakes often cause strong landslides, which can be exacerbated by heavy rain. However, after an initial increase, the frequency of these mass wasting events, often enormous and dangerous, declines, in fact independently of meteorological events and aftershocks.
These new findings are presented by a German-Franco-Japanese team of geoscientists in the current issue of the journal Geology, under the lead of the GFZ...
Bacteria do not cease to amaze us with their survival strategies. A research team from the University of Basel's Biozentrum has now discovered how bacteria enter a sleep mode using a so-called FIC toxin. In the current issue of “Cell Reports”, the scientists describe the mechanism of action and also explain why their discovery provides new insights into the evolution of pathogens.
For many poisons there are antidotes which neutralize their toxic effect. Toxin-antitoxin systems in bacteria work in a similar manner: As long as a cell...
It comes when called, bringing care utensils with it and recording how they are used: Fraunhofer IPA is developing an intelligent care cart that provides care staff with physical and informational support in their day-to-day work. The scientists at Fraunhofer IPA have now completed a first prototype. In doing so, they are continuing in their efforts to improve working conditions in the care sector and are developing solutions designed to address the challenges of demographic change.
Technical assistance systems can improve the difficult working conditions in residential nursing homes and hospitals by helping the staff in their work and...
20.08.2015 | Event News
20.08.2015 | Event News
19.08.2015 | Event News
28.08.2015 | Physics and Astronomy
28.08.2015 | Health and Medicine
28.08.2015 | Life Sciences