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Tobacco Cessation and Weight Loss: Trends in Media Coverage

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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.
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Keywords: cigarette smoking; mass media; obesity

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Management and Analysis, Pinney Associates, Pittsburgh, PA 2: Issues Management; Management and Analysis, Pinney Associates, Pittsburgh, PA 3: OTC Switch 4: Smoking Control, Strategic Development and Switch, GlaxoSmithKline, Moon Township, PA

Publication date: 2006-07-01

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  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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