As childhood obesity reaches record levels, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) has asked the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to follow the United Kingdom in banning advertisements of fatty cheese and other junk foods on television programs directed at children.

In a letter sent on Thursday to FTC Secretary Donald S. Clark, PCRM nutritionist Dulcie Ward, points out that cheese is very high in saturated fat and cholesterol and, as a result, is covered under the new ban in the United Kingdom, which will go into effect early this year.

“Just as it protects children from tobacco advertising, the Federal Trade Commission should safeguard young people from the food industry’s aggressive million-dollar ad campaigns pushing pizza, cheeseburgers, and other unhealthy food products,” says Ward.

The new U.K. regulations will ban the advertising of all foods classified as high in fat, salt, and sugar during children’s television programs and programs with a high percentage of viewers under the age of 16. A similar ban in the United States would prevent pizza companies, candy companies, and other makers of unhealthy food from advertising on SpongeBob SquarePants and similar shows.

PCRM, Brandweek