Newspaper debates on milk fats and vegetable oils in Finland, 1978–2013 : An analysis of conflicts over risks, expertise, evidence and pleasure

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Jallinoja , P , Jauho , M & Mäkelä , J 2016 , ' Newspaper debates on milk fats and vegetable oils in Finland, 1978–2013 : An analysis of conflicts over risks, expertise, evidence and pleasure ' , Appetite , vol. 105 , pp. 274–282 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2016.05.035

Title: Newspaper debates on milk fats and vegetable oils in Finland, 1978–2013 : An analysis of conflicts over risks, expertise, evidence and pleasure
Author: Jallinoja, Piia; Jauho, Mikko; Mäkelä, Johanna
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Department of Political and Economic Studies (2010-2017)
University of Helsinki, Department of Political and Economic Studies (2010-2017)
University of Helsinki, Teacher Education
Date: 2016
Language: eng
Number of pages: 9
Belongs to series: Appetite
ISSN: 0195-6663
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/217889
Abstract: The study analysed public debates on the association of milk fats, vegetable oils and cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) between 1978 and 2013 in Finland, a country with a decades-long history of public health initiatives targeting fat consumption. The main agendas, conflicts and participants were analysed. The data were collected from the newspaper Helsingin Sanomat and consisted of 52 threads and 250 texts. We identified four themes around which there were repeated, often overlapping conflicts: the health risks of saturated fats, expertise of the risks of fat consumption, the adequate evidence of the risks of fat consumption, and framing the fat question. During the research period, the main arguments of the effects of consumption of fats have remained the same. References to epidemiological and intervention studies and framing of the fat question as a public health issue, have been ongoing, as has the definition of what constitutes genuine expertise. Yet, we also found discontinuities. In the early 2000s new emphases began to emerge: personal experiences were increasingly presented as evidence of the effects of dietary choices on human health, and the question of fat consumption was framed either as one of enjoyment or of a consumers’ right to choose rather than only being a public health question. Moreover, new professional groups such as chefs and creative professionals now joined the discussion.
Subject: 5141 Sociology
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