Junk food addiction: BBC News Review

Chocolate bars and ice cream can be as addictive as drugs. Now some scientists think they should come with a warning. This is News Review from BBC Learning English. I’m Neil And I’m Beth. Make sure you watch to the end to learn vocabulary to talk about this story. Don’t forget to subscribe to our channel, like this video and try the quiz on our website. Now, the story. The junk food. you love might soon have ‘addictive’ written on it. A major review has found that adding warning labels to ultra-processed food could stop people buying it. Researchers say

these foods can have the same addiction symptoms as drugs. They estimate 1 in 7 adults and 1 in 8 children are already addicted to ultra-processed foods. You’ve been looking at the headlines, Beth. What’s the vocabulary? We have: labelled, tackle and slapping. This is News Review from BBC Learning English. Let’s have a look at our first headline. This is from Sky News. Some ultra-processed foods should be labelled ‘addictive’, scientists say. So, this headline is saying that some scientists think certain types of food, ultra-processed foods, should be labelled ‘addictive’. Addictive, meaning something you cannot stop doing. But

we’re looking at ‘labelled’ and it contains the word ‘label’. ‘A label’ – something you find, for example, on your clothes or on a packet, which has some information. It does, yeah. A

label gives you information about the object that it’s attached to, like your shirt. But here the headline is saying that ultra-processed food should literally come with a label that says ‘addictive’ on it. Right, so is that it? It’s very literal. It’s very clear, but I bet there’s a metaphorical use as well. There is. So a person, an object, an activity can be labelled and

this means described in a certain way, often unfairly. For example, maybe you tell one lie and now you’re labelled a liar. Were you labelled anything at school, Neil? Maybe a troublemaker? No. I wasn’t labelled a troublemaker, but maybe I was labelled a clown because I used to like to make funny jokes in the class. Yeah. OK, let’s look at that again. Let’s have our next headline. This is from The Times. Label ultra-processed foods ‘addictive’ to tackle obesity, say scientists. So, there’s that word ‘label’ again that we’ve just been learning about. Scientists say we should label

ultra-processed foods as ‘addictive’ so that we can help to tackle obesity and ‘tackle’ is the word we are looking at. ‘Tackle’ is a word familiar to every football fan. It’s when you try to take the ball from the opposition. Is there any connection? Kind of. So, in football, the other team are the opposition and you want to beat them. Now, in the story, tackle is used metaphorically. Obesity is what we want to beat or deal with and that’s why the headline says we want to tackle obesity. We need to deal with it. OK. So how

else can we use ‘tackle’ in this metaphorical way? Well, police might tackle crime in a city. Lots of people are doing what they can to tackle climate change. That’s right. I’ve started riding my bike to work to help tackle climate change. Let’s look at that again. Let’s have our next headline. This is from the Daily Mail. Slapping junk food with ‘addictive’ warning labels could help end obesity, major review finds. So, addictive warning labels could be added to junk food. The word we’re looking at is ‘slapping’. Beth, what is ‘slap’? It’s this. Don’t worry, that wasn’t

real, and slap in the headline is also not literal. It’s metaphorical. So, ‘slap’ here means to put a label on to the junk food quickly and urgently. Yes, that’s right. So, it’s emphasising that the new labels should be added soon. It’s an urgent situation and the use of slap, there’s a kind of aggression about it as well. Now, Beth, can you give me 10 more examples please? 10? We don’t have time for 10 more! That’s ridiculous. Well Beth just slapped down my idea. And there’s another use of ‘slap’ as a phrasal verb with ‘down’ and

it means to criticise someone’s suggestion. Let’s look at that again. We’ve had: tackle – deal with, labelled – described in a specific way and slapping – attaching urgently. Now if you enjoyed this topic, we think you’ll love this episode of News Review about fast food being bad for your brain. Click here to watch. And don’t forget to click here to subscribe to our channel so you never miss another video. Thanks for joining us. Bye!

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