“The food and beverage industry already has taken significant steps to create and encourage healthier choices,” Sophos said in her testimony. “In recent years, we have changed our packaging to promote portion control and we have reformulated more than 10,000 products to reduce or remove saturated fats, trans fats, calories, sugar and sodium.
“Changes in advertising practices have resulted in a significant shift in the product mix of advertising viewed by children, and companies continue to compete by focusing on consumers’ desires for healthy products and a healthy lifestyle,” Sophos added.
“The impact of television on childhood obesity is likely mediated by the food advertisements directed at children, and the consumption of foods advertised on television,” Dietz said.
Sophos wants government to step up its efforts and devote more of its resources to combating obesity. “It is critical that Congress and the states do more to increase investments in physical education, nutrition education and workplace wellness,” she said.