Our analysis of print advertising in the early twentieth century reveals that in an era of scientific discovery and therapeutic ethos, fruits and vegetables were advertised as medical tonics, with "prescriptions" that included recommended daily doses, to ward off or cure real or imagined medical ailments (flu, listlessness, acidosis). During this time of post-patent advertising fallout and the Truth in Advertising movement, we show how advertisers used scientific (and pseudoscientific) tactics to gain credibility while convincing women that careful attention to nutrition as a science was the way to achieve a happy and healthy family. We argue the national brands' and growers' associations within the advertising institution contributed to public knowledge and confusion about nutrition and foods in early medicalization of fruits and vegetables. This paper charts the history of advertising techniques in communicating health information via fruit and vegetable advertising and anticipates the implications of national advertising on nutrition education in society today.

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