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The childhood obesity epidemic is an urgent public health problem, and it
will continue to take a substantial toll on the health of Americans. The most
recent data show that almost a third of U.S. children and adolescents are
overweight or obese. Children are exposed to an enormous amount of commercial
advertising and marketing for food. In 2009, children 2-11 years old saw and
average of more than 10 television food ads per day. The marketing of
high-calorie, low-nutrient foods and beverages is linked to overweight and
obesity. The IOM hosted a workshop to examine contemporary trends in marketing
of foods and beverages to children and youth and the implications of those
trends for obesity prevention.