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Buyers of food from promotions tend to be overweight
According to a recent study, consumers who buy food and beverages from promotions are more likely to be obese than those who do without such bargains. Being overweight increases the risk of cancer.
Increased risk of cancer
Consumers who fill their shopping trolleys in the supermarket mainly with food and drinks that are offered as bargains are more obese than those who do without special offers. A study by the British Cancer Research UK Foundation shows this connection. According to the study authors, the strong overweight also increases the risk of at least 13 different types of cancer, including breast and colon cancer. The experts are in favor of legally regulating the seductive special offers.
Bargain shoppers buy fewer fruits and vegetables
According to a statement, the study, which looked at the habits of more than 16,000 British households, found that people whose shopping baskets contained around 40-80 percent of special offers were more likely to be overweight.
The evaluation also showed that almost half of the chocolate, chips, popcorn and savory snacks purchased came from special promotions.
Bargain-loving consumers also bought 30 percent less fruit and almost 25 percent less vegetables. This corresponds to almost six kilograms less fruit and vegetables per month than for buyers who are more inclined to avoid the special offers.
Food with a high fat, salt or sugar content
According to the authors, around three in ten groceries and beverages bought in the UK are special offers.
The people who bought the most bargains bought 25 percent more foods and drinks high in fat, salt, or sugar, which is equivalent to about eleven additional unhealthy products per month.
Obesity was almost 30 percent more likely to happen to households that bought the most food and drink from special offers than those who had bought the least.
Obesity is a national epidemic and the second most common cause of preventable cancer in the UK after smoking, the experts report.
Context known for a long time
Nutritional psychologist Joachim Westenhöfer from the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences was not particularly surprised by the results of the study.
According to a message from the dpa news agency, the expert points out in an independent classification of the report that the relationship between a high energy density of food at a relatively low price has been known for some time.
"Food is cheaper today than ever before," Westenhöfer said according to the agency. "The result is unhealthy overconsumption."
There are no comparable studies in this country, but according to the scientist, similar results would be likely: "In this country in particular, a" stinginess is cool "mentality applies."
Seductive but unhealthy foods
"Special offers offer people a wealth of tempting but unhealthy food and drink when they shop weekly," said Professor Linda Bauld, Cancer Research UK prevention expert.
"With special offers for chocolate, cookies, cakes and lemonades, it is no surprise that people who buy more offers are more likely to be obese," said the scientist.
"Since young children often suffer the effects of these purchases, the introduction of restrictions is important for their future health," said Bauld.
"We know that more than one in five who go to elementary school are overweight or obese and the number deteriorates to around one in three by the time they leave school."
The situation is similar in Germany. The KiGGS study showed that every seventh child in Germany is too fat: over 15.4 percent of children and adolescents between the ages of three and 17 are overweight, and around 5.9 percent are even obese.
Alison Cox, director of cancer prevention at Cancer Research UK, said that child obesity needs to be restricted in price increases for unhealthy food and drink.
In addition, such products should no longer be visible in the strategically placed places in front of the cash registers. "This helps families make healthier decisions," said the expert.
"There is no one solution to the problem, but removing these incentives to buy unhealthy foods is the key to change."
Legal regulations are also being considered in Germany. For example, some experts have been demanding higher taxes on unhealthy food for years.
Others are in favor of abolishing VAT on fruit and vegetables.
A US study also showed how useful financial support for healthy food could be.
According to the scientists, such a measure could be just as or more effective than other common interventions, such as preventive drug treatments for high blood pressure or high cholesterol. This could also prevent countless cardiovascular diseases. (ad)