A new study suggests that banning fast-food ads on TV could reduce the number of obese young children by 18 percent, and the number of obese older kids by 14 percent.
Some experts call it the first national study to show that fast-food TV commercials have such a big impact on childhood obesity.
The study is based in part on several years of government survey data from the late 1990s. It also suggests that dropping an advertising expense tax deduction for fast-food restaurants could mean a slight reduction in childhood obesity.
But the authors stop short of urging elimination of the tax deduction, or banning fast-food TV ads.
The study is being published this month in the Journal of Law & Economics.