'Simpsons' to help improve British diets

Oct. 4, 2009 at 11:39 AM

LONDON, Oct. 4 (UPI) -- The British government is set to sponsor episodes of the U.S. TV series "The Simpsons" as part of a new physical fitness campaign, officials say.

The Sunday Times of London said after officials examined the dietary and exercise patterns of the animated family, they determined Bart Simpson and his sister, Lisa, enjoy positive eating and exercise habits.

So as part of the Change4Life campaign by Aardman Animations, the fictional family will be shown eating nutritious fare together during the sponsored episodes.

A health department spokeswoman did acknowledge that certain aspects of the Simpsons family's habits were not admirable, such as Homer's obsession with beer and doughnuts.

"The beer-drinking and doughnut-eating is clearly not what we would want," the unidentified spokeswoman said of the campaign, which features the slogan "Supporting The Simpsons: Sometimes."

"They provide a popular and engaging way to get the message to real-life families about simple ways of improving their diet and activity for a healthier lifestyle," Public Health Minister Gillian Merron told The Sunday Times.

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