African-Americans are less likely than whites to be screened for colorectal cancer, and the disparity almost certainly contributes to higher mortality. A new review of studies identifies effective strategies for improving the situation, but suggests that work remains to be done.
“We have seen some success in interventions, and shown that it’s important to tailor approaches to African American individuals and to use multiple approaches, strategies, and communication media,” said review author Barbara Powe, Ph.D.
The studies’ lack of long term follow-up represents “a gap in research,” however. “We need to learn to design interventions to create patterns of screening that could enhance screening for other cancers as well,” said Powe, a registered nurse and director of Cancer Communication Science for the American Cancer Society.
The researchers, in partnership with the Cancer Council, Australia, studied 12,618 food advertisements from 11 countries and found that 67 per cent endorsed unhealthy food. The research builds on a previous study at Liverpool which revealed that children would consume twice as many calories from snacks after watching food adverts compared to after viewing advertising for toys and games.
The research reveals that Germany, Spain and Greece have the highest frequency of adverts promoting unhealthy foods during children’s peak viewing time, compared to other European countries and parts of the US, Canada and Australia. These adverts tend to feature child-orientated persuasive techniques, such as the use of popular animated characters and celebrities.
Although the US, Canada and Australia have a lower rate of unhealthy food advertising overall, broadcasters still air the adverts more frequently during a time when children are watching.