I’ll admit it, I enjoy eating fast food. It’s tasty, but it’s extremely unhealthy. Everyone share the same ideas about it, yet it seems that with these constant advertisement and promotions, it often influenced us to buy and eat these deliciously fattening foods. Fast food companies often promotes an unhealthy diet and if they keep bombarding everyone with these ads, it would only lead to more health problems.
What is most striking about this dilemma is the question, what effect does this have on the youth?
According to Yale Rudd center for Food Policy and Obesity, they acknowledge a startling fact that is very concerning for youth’s health, explaining “They are marketing to children more than ever-exposure to fast food ads on TV increased by 21% for preschoolers, 34% for children (2-11), and 39% for teens (12-17) from 2003-2009. The average preschooler sees almost 3 ads per day for fast food.”
Trevor O., a junior in Merced School, opines, “ Kids [locally] encounter ads quite frequently, everyday they go to school, they drive by it, seeing posters of food, get it after school, see it during school, of course with us [Merced High School Students], during passing period we can see Long John Silver’s or McDonald’s and makes me want to get lunch there.”
Children have a strong influence over the decision of their parents. If they don’t get what they want, they might throw I tantrum, cry, and pout.
I’m always exposed to fast food restaurants, whether, seeing an advertisement on TV, on the internet, billboards, or just seeing the restaurants on my way to school. Especially living in a small “city” like Merced. Merced is not a Culinary Mecca that food critics would adore. Fast food companies dominate the restaurant scene in Merced. Merced is one of the most economic deprived cities in California.
According to US census Bureau, the average per capita money income in past 12 months 2006-2010 in Merced is $18,041, while the average of California is $29,188. In addition the average persons below poverty level, percent, 2006-2010 is 21.8%, while the average in California is 13.7%.
Merced, baldy shaped due to recent economic turnouts, many shops and restaurants eventually have to close down or never get started because of fear or outcomes due to the economic status of Merced. If you want to eat, it’s a good chance that you’ll end up going to a fast food restaurant due to lack of variety in a city like Merced. Fast food restaurants are located almost everywhere in this city. It’s a good chance that kids would go locate one on a daily basis by just going to school.
Just by having ads for kids to see can make them immediately want to buy the food if it appeals to them. It was 2001, midday, back from school, tired and bored out of my mind, I could not decide what should I do. I turned on my TV and watched my favorite shows on Cartoon Network. As usually, it cuts to a commercial break and immediately one thing has caught my attention. McDonald’s has a new toy line in their happy meal…. Monsters, Inc. toys. They had figures of Mike Wazowski and Sulley, and many others. Why that was, and is, one of my favorite movies of all time. The first reaction was to collect them of course, so what did I do? Go to my mom so she can buy it for me. It wasn’t hard to convince her since I was skinny back then. The first figure I got was the antagonist of the movie, and that time I really despise him because of his role. So what I ended up doing to collect the figures is by ordering more happy meals. I ended up devising a plan to get these figures. I would ask my mom, then wait at least 2 days, and then ask my dad to buy me a happy meal. By doing this, I ended up getting just short of half of total character available but I also received two of the same characters. I also had moral values too. I would never waste food; it was just the way I was raised.