Health information and advertising appeals in food commercials: A content analysis

Kara Chan*, Vivienne Leung, Lennon Tsang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

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A content analysis of 311 food commercials broadcast on television networks in Hong Kong was conducted. There were nearly equal proportions of ads for healthy and unhealthy foods. The three most frequently used advertising appeals were taste/flavor/smell/texture, health/wellbeing and physical performance/speed/strength. Altogether 54 percent of the food ads contained health-related claims. Intriguingly, 23 percent of the ads for unhealthy food contained health-related claims. The prevalent use of general health claims in unhealthy food ads calls for policy makers to devise better ways to regulate health claims in food advertisements. This is the first content analysis of health and nutrition information in food advertisingarising from a society with a rich herbalist tradition.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-144
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Nutritional Therapeutics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2013

User-Defined Keywords

  • Children
  • Television
  • Nutrition
  • Diet
  • Healthy Eating


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