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Monday, June 8, 2009

Foods that are not healthy for kids

If you have seen the new McDonald's ad on TV you could be mistaken for thinking that taking the family out for a play in the park followed by a trip to the local burger joint is a healthy thing to do. Unfortunately, while physical activity is great for kids, a high fat meal of burgers and fries is probably not the best choice to follow a family play session.

There are a number of advertisements currently been shown that send pretty mixed messages about healthy eating for kids. Take the Nutella ad for example; Nutella has a low GI because it is high in fat. A breakfast of 2 slices of toast with Nutella, milk and a piece of fruit is about double the total amount of energy a child requires for breakfast and 2 tablespoons of Nutella contains almost half a child's daily requirement of fat - so no, it is not a good breakfast choice for children.

Another example is seen in the Uncle Toby's Fruit sticks currently being plugged by none less than a sports dietitian. Each serve is packed with 16g of sugar which also means it is not such a good snack choice for children either.

It is time for food industry to stand up and take food marketing to children, directly or indirectly seriously. Featuring less than nutritionally sound food products in commercials that promote physical activity make things even more confusing for parents. Just becuase it sounds, and is made to look healthy, doesn't mean that it is.