Begins with the vast range of diets worldwide, and how the structure and content of “acceptable” food varies; children’s attitudes and tastes for food are largely conditioned by the socialisation process via family and friends. Outlines the nature of food advertising as a secondary influence on brand choice against the backdrop of an established set of preferences and choices. Defines obesity as accumulation of fat in the body and indicates measures of this, such as the Body Mass Index (BMI). Moves on the causes of obesity, noting the importance of the genetic component: 25‐40% of the range of BMI may be attributed to heritability. Contrasts cultural attitudes to obesity in developed against developing societies.
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