Tobacco cessation and weight loss: trends in media coverage

Am J Health Behav. Jul-Aug 2006;30(4):363-74. doi: 10.5555/ajhb.2006.30.4.363.


Objective: To examine time trends in amount of media coverage on tobacco cessation versus weight loss and test whether the 2 topics compete for limited media attention.

Methods: Monthly print and broadcast media coverage from 1995 to 2003 was estimated.

Results: Tobacco and weight coverage were uncorrelated. Tobacco coverage peaked in 1997-98, whereas coverage of weight increased linearly between 1995 and 2003.

Conclusion: Tobacco and weight topics do not appear to compete for media coverage. Interest in weight topics is rising, consistent with its growing public health importance. Coverage of tobacco is declining, suggesting a need to keep tobacco and cessation in the public eye.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Mass Media / statistics & numerical data*
  • Mass Media / trends*
  • Obesity / epidemiology*
  • Prevalence
  • Public Health
  • Seasons
  • Smoking / epidemiology*
  • Smoking Cessation / statistics & numerical data*
  • Smoking Prevention*
  • Weight Loss*