“India needs to take measures to limit consumption of junk food. It should be integral to government’s plan to contain diet-related NCDs. A set of comprehensive measures is required.
“It should regulate marketing of foods, drastically improve-upon existing labelling norms, limit availability of junk foods in schools and run public awareness campaigns,” said Chandra Bhushan, deputy director general at CSE.
Now, before you flip out over not seeing anymore “Ranveer Chings” on your TV, hear this. With a population of over 1.2 billion, India has over 60 million people suffering from diabetes, which is a whopping 50%! And it does not come as a surprise when a country with half its population suffering from diabetes wants to take strict measures to eradicate it or even bring it under control.
The theme for World Health Day 2016 is ‘Beat Diabetes’, which makes it all the more significant and relevant in India. The Center for Science and Environment (CSE) has stated that of all the cases the most prevalent for of diabetes is Type 2, which is a diet-related non-communicable disease (NCD).
This somewhat clears the air on why the authority wants to taboo the promotion and marketing of junk and processed foods especially via impressionable mediums like celebrated personalities.
Hazardous To Children
Pointing out that children largely view these advertisements, the deputy director general added: “The food industry should not be allowed to aggressively target our children. No celebrity should be allowed to advertise soft drinks, chocolates, noodles etc. Broadcast of food advertisements should be prohibited on programs that are viewed by children.
“No such company should be allowed to sponsor events at schools. No junk food should available in or around schools. Mandatory government controls are required as successfully done in other parts of the world,” said Bhushan.
This embargo on celebrities endorsing junk and processed food is aimed to only spearhead diabetes but also obesity, which is fast becoming an epidemic in the country.
That said, is this the solution? Putting a taboo on all that is bad? Yes, junk food and processed packaged chows are harmful but isn’t the air we breathe unsafe too? So what next, compulsory breathing masks? Or maybe they could run the celeb-endorsed advertisements only on odd days. What say, CM?