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Public Health Assignment: Availability of Junk Food in School


Task: Write a well-research public health assignment on the availability of junk food in school.


Junk food is harmful to children and this type of food cannot be entertained on the school premises. The paper will offer its consideration for the issue to create some awareness among parents and the children to reduce the consumption of junk food. In its discussion, it will analyze the background of such an issue to understand the type of public health concern related to the issue. Further, the paper even will offer its consideration for factors which are influential or initiate the issue. Public health theory to prevent such issue even has been incorporated. Legal procedures and local, regional, and international concerns also has been encrypted for the issue through the paper to prevent risk factors for childhood.

Researches prove that the institution which is not financially affluent or strong, grant the permission of selling junk food in the school premises to arrange fund or sponsorship for the school. It considers the fact that the referred type of food such as junk or unhealthy food is most preferred among children (Cutumisu et al, 2020). However, the schools need to think in a better way as that this type of food is not good for health and thus the availability of such food need to be prohibited in school premises. School is the institutions where students do not get only education rather acquire all types of knowledge thereby proper guidance need to be there to avoid junk food.

Relationship with Public Health Concerns
Childhood obesity becomes a global concern that mainly gets triggered by an improper food diet, consumption of junk food is one of the primary factor. Junk foods do not carry nutrients; rather it carries harmful saturated fat, with high level of sugar and sodium. Thereby this type of low nutrients food can only satisfy the taste buds; though cannot be referred to as healthy (Leonard, 2017). Childhood is the initial stage for a man's life, development and behaviors at this stage assure a healthy life for him. Hence at this stage of the life both teachers and parents need to facilitate their concern for the issue to make the students aware of the side effects or disadvantages of junk food. Attention even needs to be projected towards healthy habits to make a healthy food habit among the students. Instead of having junk food regularly, the students need to choose a healthy food diet with adequate drinking of water. Awareness or concern related the issue will help the children to deal with obesity related issue in future. Apart from physical health, mental health is even related to the consumption of junk food as excessive eating of junk food can attain impaired academic performance and lead to low concentration level. The high sugar level of junk food hinders the concentration capability of the children and as a result they are not able to concentrate properly in studies. Thereby it can be stated that junk food availability for the students can be harmful. All possibilities of physical and mental health issues can be there due to junk food (Mirhadyan et al, 2020).

Triggering factors
In order to understand and address the issue to offer a better future for the children, it is important to facilitate concern for factors that trigger the issue most. It is an inevitable fact that all children like fast food or junk food most and share a similar level of hatred towards a healthy food diet like consuming vegetables and fruits. Researchers prove that schools that are not financially strong or affluent enough often allow such types of food on the school premises to generate funding. The school authority exercises the factor that the attraction of students towards junk food help them to generate better funding for the school. However, being an educational institution it needs to protect its concern in a healthier way where it can show the path for the students that the consumption of junk food is not good for health (DuBreck et al, 2018). Parents are even responsible for such types of issues. Stress of work-life, less time and less bonding with the children hinders the effective communication between the children and the parents as a result they do not get efficient time to help their children to generate a good food habit. Further, the working parents do not get enough time or rather do not wish to put effort to make homemade food for their children. Thereby a lack of availability of homemade food compels the students to be attracted to the junk food in the school. The students are even not much careful regarding the disadvantages of junk food.

Health belief theory
Preventing such type of behavior is important to make a better future for students. Hence the public health theory that can be used to change the behavior of the child is Health belief theory or model. Employing a health belief model can be influential in this regard as it directly addresses change in the optimal behavior. Thereby by exercising the model, students, teachers, parents, and school authority can change the optimal behavior and obtain healthy food habits in a positive environment. The theory is helpful to address barriers, self-efficacy, benefits, and threats through which issues can be clarified. With the help of this public theory, the future health of the child can be shaped as this model does not only cater to food needs of the individual but provide an overall solution to keep the mental, physical and social health of the individual. The theory does not only address the barriers or threats or benefits rather it is even potential to offer Health Promotion as well as disease prevention programs. Thereby it can be said that, with the help of the theory, awareness can be generated among everyone. The concern can be followed by prevention programs for diseases like obesity mostly caused by consumption of junk food. In its process, it figures out the main issue initially to acquire engagement for promoting health behavior among everyone (Salari, and Filus, 2017). After identifying the key issue it shares its primary focus over individual belief to understand the health condition of an individual. The approach helps to generate a better-customized concern. The use of the theory can be internal and external where teachers and school authorities as well as parents can obtain internal exploration of the theory to attain healthy food habits. Whereas society by campaigning can address the external environment to make the Health Promotion program or prevention activities successful.

Through the help of the theory future issues due to junk food and availability of it in school premises can be avoided. Awareness generated through the model can help to understand preventive measures which can direct the present in right way to acquire better obesity free future.

Shaping food system
Identification of the factors helps to obtain proper policies to deal with the issues from all aspects. In order to resolve or prevent the issue, it is most important for students to be aware of proper diet chart and the disadvantages of junk food. Collaboration of everyone like parents, teachers, students and school authority needs to be exercised to address and resolve the issue. The local concern is even important in this regard. Locality needs to be aware of such issues to initiate the awareness for the neighborhood through campaigning where advantages of drinking and food habit can be addressed (Saengthong et al, 2020). School authority implements a regional approach to deal with the issue effectively by incorporating food safety and standard in the infrastructure. International initiative in this regard even has been addressed by the World Health Organization as it encrypts different safety regulations in its part which need to be maintained by school and home such as no junk food should be allowed in school permises (Salari and Filus, 2017).

The paper offers its consideration for the issue of junk food availability in the school premises by considering it as a harmful product and can initiate different types of health issues for children. Through the discussion, it has tried to address the international health issue of obesity which is mostly caused by excessive consumption of junk food. Through the discussion, it has been evident that junk food carries low nutrients and saturated fat which are harmful to health and can attain mental issues as well. Impaired academic performance for students can take place due to the high sugar level of junk food as per the discussion. In order to address the issue circulating awareness by exercising bonding between teachers, students, and parents need to be there. The health belief model can be a better theory for preventing health issues and promoting awareness. Apart from the theory, local, regional, and international concerns are even incorporated through the paper. Parents and teachers are responsible to employ local consideration. School authority is there for regional and international aspects by sustaining food safety and standard and WHO instructions.

Cutumisu, N., Traoré, I., Paquette, M.C., Cazale, L., Camirand, H., Lalonde, B. and Robitaille, E., 2017. Association between junk food consumption and fast-food outlet access near school among Quebec secondary-school children: findings from the Quebec Health Survey of High School Students (QHSHSS) 2010–11. Public health nutrition, 20(5), pp.927-937.

DuBreck, C.M., Sadler, R.C., Arku, G. and Gilliland, J.A., 2018. Examining community and consumer food environments for children: An urban-suburban-rural comparison in Southwestern Ontario.Social Science & Medicine, 209, pp.33-42.

Leonard, P.S., 2017. Do school junk food bans improve student health? Evidence from Canada.Canadian Public Policy, 43(2), pp.105-119.

Mirhadyan, L., Latreyi, S.M. and AfsanehPasha, E.K.N.L., 2020. Junk Food Consumption and its Associated Factors in High School Students in Rasht in 2017.Journal of Research Development in Nursing and Midwifery, 17(1), pp.52-66.

Saengthong, W., Tanwattanakul, J. and Santiboon, T.T., 2020. Assessing students’ nutritional junk food interpersonal behaviors of their knowledge, attitudes, and amounting energy acquirements toward environmental schooling health in Thailand. Systematic Reviews in Pharmacy, 11(2), pp.725-735.

Salari, R. and Filus, A., 2017. Using the health belief model to explain mothers’ and fathers’ intention to participate in universal parenting programs.Prevention Science, 18(1), pp.83-94.


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