Government can regulate food advertising to children because cognitive research shows that it is inherently misleading

Samantha Graff, Dale L Kunkel, Seth E. Mermin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

40 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The childhood obesity crisis has prompted repeated calls for government action to curb the marketing of unhealthy food to children. Food and entertainment industry groups have asserted that the First Amendment prohibits such regulation. However, case law establishes that the First Amendment does not protect "inherently misleading" commercial speech. Cognitive research indicates that young children cannot effectively recognize the persuasive intent of advertising or apply the critical evaluation required to comprehend commercial messages. Given this combination-that government can prohibit "inherently misleading" advertising and that children cannot adequately understand commercial messages-advertising to children younger than age twelve should be considered beyond the scope of constitutional protection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)392-398
Number of pages7
JournalHealth Affairs
Volume31
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2012

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Food
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Pediatric Obesity
Food Industry
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Haemophilus influenzae type b-polysaccharide vaccine-diphtheria toxoid conjugate

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  • Health Policy

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Government can regulate food advertising to children because cognitive research shows that it is inherently misleading. / Graff, Samantha; Kunkel, Dale L; Mermin, Seth E.

In: Health Affairs, Vol. 31, No. 2, 02.2012, p. 392-398.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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