Terrifying Infographic On Childhood Obesity Reveals The Media Giant Parents Are Up Against

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I don’t believe advertising directly to kids should be legal. I suppose adults are fair game for product pushing, but I can’t get behind the practice for children.

Since we’ve acknowledged how powerful cigarette and alcohol advertisements are to an impressionable underage audience and slapped those industries with restrictions, I don’t find the running ads yelling about Mattel products to be all that comforting. Toys are in no way equatable with smoking, but the recognition for that kind of persuasion — regardless of the product — is what I find incredibly alarming. Without the ability to detect persuasive intent or truly understand the messages encoded in their programming, children in our country are vulnerable to branding from the moment they exit the womb. And in our hyper media-driven times, television and radio aren’t the gadgets parents need to consider. Every new year there seems to be new technology that can keep children plugged in, from iPads to computers to smartphones. The problem is so concerning that some nations are responding accordingly with no direct advertising allowed for children under the age of 12.

Of course, parents should be held accountable for keeping that media consumption in check in the home, an effort that is much easier said than done. And an infographic by entitled “Targeting Children With Treats” reveals the media monolith that modern parents are up against with regard to childhood obesity. Children now see more soda advertisements than ever before, but this infographic reveals that’s just the beginning.