Advertisers Targeting Parents: Is That Snack Actually Healthy?

Candy, potato chips, soda... this next story might make you hungry! There's new evidence that some companies are trying to trick parents into believing certain junk foods are actually healthy. 

Television channels that target kids are riddled with ads for juice drinks, cereals and snacks.  Many include characters aimed at enticing kids.  But a new study from Dartmouth concludes parents are increasingly being targeted by advertisers who want them to believe these snacks are healthy.

The researchers looked at 51 food products intended for children and found half of those are also advertised to parents. The problem? Researchers say many of the snacks advertised did not meet federal standards for healthy snacks. And the ads aimed at parents appear to be on the rise, making it very hard for adults to sift through all the health claims.

The study did not examine how effective the ads are at actually getting adults to buy junk food.

Instructional Links

Interactive Website and Activities: Don't Buy It, Get Media Smart

Website: Fast Food Facts, Food Advertising to Children and Teens

PDF: FDA. Talk to Your Kids About the Nutrition Facts Label

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