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WHO calls for more protection of children from food advertising

Geneva, Jul 3 (Prensa Latina) The WHO today published stricter recommendations to protect children from the harmful impact of food and beverage marketing with a high content of saturated fatty acids, sugars, and salt (HFSS).

The updated recommendation is based on the findings of reviews of recent evidence, including how the exposure and power of food marketing affect children’s health, eating behaviors, attitudes and beliefs related to these resources, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

The world body now recommends mandatory regulation of the marketing of HFSS food and non-alcoholic beverages, while previously allowing for a greater variety of approaches.

Restricting the persuasive power of food marketing also has an impact, which means limiting the use of cartoons or techniques that appeal to children, such as including toys with products, advertising songs, and celebrity endorsements.

“The aggressive and widespread marketing of foods and beverages high in fat, sugar and salt to children is responsible for unhealthy dietary choices,” said Dr Francesco Branca, director of WHO’s Department of Nutrition and Food Safety. .

“Calls for responsible marketing practices have not had a significant impact. Governments should put in place strong and comprehensive regulations,” added Branca.