Everyday, thousands of ads stream on television and across social media.
A lot of the time, advertisements are statistics or standards about the health or merit of a product. However, you must take into account that these advertisements are using simulations and being paid big bucks. Their first priority is not the truth. Rather, they relay false information in efforts to increase sales.
We may not notice it, but advertisements provoke unhealthy habits.
Think of how many fast food commercials you have seen over your lifetime. Consider how many McDonald's commercials you have seen showcasing their kids meals with a "limited edition" toy. Each of these advertisements have been done in hopes of gaining your money as a valued customer. In the article "How Advertising Confuses Kids about Nutrition, Health," Chandra Johnson emphasizes the success that advertisements have on impacting our health. A study found that "advertising focuses on sensory connections to food," which can create "and normalize what's called "hedonic hunger" or a person's urge to eat or overeat when their body doesn't need more food."
This means fast food companies can induce hunger just through one ad. Using the sound of a pop can opening or enticing words such as "juicy" or "mouth-watering," they can create hedonic hunger in their viewers. Bingo! They've got your business and your money.
Big corporations spend a lot of money on advertisements.
These people focus on targeting your senses with words to trigger hunger or thirst. They make you hungry or thirsty for their product to ensure that the advertisement was worth the cost. They also normalize unhealthy eating patterns like "a midnight snack" or "pizza for dinner every night," even though these things are not normal or good for your health. Unhealthy habits lead to unhealthy lifestyles, which in turn big corporations make profit off of your eating habits.
Another money-driven advertisement lies in the well-known "Got Milk?" campaign.
From the school hallways to the doctor's office, the campaign was everywhere urging us to consume more milk. The iconic ad is known for using famous celebrities and athletes with milk mustaches alongside text outlining the benefits of milk. However, we failed to notice just why these famous people were being used to promote milk.
In the article "Too Much Milk?," Chris Woolston reveals why Connie Weaver, head of food and nutrition at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind., suggests drinking 3 glasses of milk a day. He says, "Most of Weaver's funding comes from the National Institutes of Health, but she's also supported by the National Dairy Council."
Funding issues almost always get in the way of telling the truth.
This does not stop at government programs either. As someone who is supposed to be giving honest advice, Weaver fails to deliver truthful suggestions because of funding from the National Dairy Council. The National Dairy Council could be funding a lot of different programs in order to promote milk. There's certainly plenty of people who are paid to tell us it's safe to consume certain products when in reality it's not.
The world is full of misconceptions.
It is unsettling how much deception occurs daily and all around us, whether that be in our food, products, and social media. We live in a society focused on mass production and consumption. As consumers in this type of society, we must be conscious and actively aware of what we are buying. You must be smarter than the salesman, whether that's on your television or on the screen in your hands. After all, money does make the world go 'round.