January 2019 Newsletter

Rudd Center Recent Publications

Increasing Disparities in Unhealthy Food Advertising Targeted to Black and Hispanic Youth

Restaurant, food, and beverage companies continue to target Black and Hispanic consumers with advertising for their least nutritious products, including fast food, candy, sugary drinks, and snacks. Using 2017 market research data, researchers examined food-related advertising on Black-targeted and Hispanic-language TV networks, as well as all exposure to food-related ads by children across various demographics. Findings indicate that disparities in how many food-related ads are seen by Black youth when compared to White youth have increased since the release of Rudd's first targeted marketing report in 2015, and companies continue to advertise unhealthy products over healthier alternatives. 

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Rudd Center In The News

Director of Marketing Initiatives, Jennifer Harris, received widespread media coverage following the recent release of her report, Increasing Disparities in Unhealthy Food Advertising Targeted to Black and Hispanic Youth. Coverage included articles in the Washington Post, CNN, NBC News, ABC News, Huffington Post, Bloomberg, New Haven Register, HealthDay, Reuters, and MarketWatch

Dr. Harris' report was also featured in segments on HLN and Roland Martin Unfiltered, as well as in a variety of Spanish-speaking publications, including World News en Español, Latino Detroit, Telemundo, Hoy Los Angeles, Impacto Latino, and Alianza News

Dr. Marlene Schwartz was quoted in an article in K-12 Daily discussing her study on school nutrition policy interventions in middle schools.

"How the Stigma Against Obesity Harms People's Health," a recent article in FiveThirtyEight, included insights from Dr. Rebecca Puhl on core beliefs underlying weight stigma. 

What's Simmering With Our Friends? 

New Report on State Approaches to Testing School Drinking Water for Lead

Even at low levels, lead exposure is harmful for children, which is why a focus on this issue is deserved amidst findings of lead contamination in schools and communities across the country. A new report from the Prevention Research Center on Nutrition and Physical Activity at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the Nutrition Policy Institute at the University of California examines states' approaches to testing school drinking water for lead and finds notable variation in states' efforts. Researchers also found that many students in the U.S. attend public schools in states where not all taps are tested for lead. Read the full report here

A Legal and Practical Guide for Designing Sugary Drink Taxes

Sugary drinks are the number one source of added sugars in the American diet and are a major contributor to our country's high rates of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, poor oral health, and other chronic conditions. They are also associated with health inequities among racial and income groups. 

Healthy Food America and ChangeLab Solutions have created A Legal and Practical Guide for Designing Sugary Drink Taxes for local officials and advocates who are interested in pursuing sugary drink taxes and for anyone interested in learning more about this strategy. For access to the guide and additional information, click here. 

Food for Thought: A Global Syndemic

The report of the Lancet Commission on Obesity demonstrates that the pandemics of obesity, undernutrition, and climate change represent the paramount challenge for humans, the environment, and our planet. These three elements comprise what is now being referred to as The Global Syndemic, and The Commission urges a radical rethink of business models, food systems, civil society involvement, and national and international governance to address these issues. 

Additional Resources:

News To Chew On

Diabetes.co.uk
Influence of Food Industry Must be Reduced to Combat Obesity, Experts Warn

Healthline
How to Combat 'Food Deserts' and 'Food Swamps'
 
Vox
The Case for a Junk Food Tax
 
National Post
How 'Weight Bias' is Harming Us All

Food Navigator
Germany Calls for Food Manufacturers to Voluntarily Reduce Sugar, Fats, and Salts