Trending: Are mothers manipulated into buying junk food? - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Trending: Are mothers manipulated into buying junk food?

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(CNN) -- It's something familiar to almost every parent -- children begging for snacks they've seen advertised on television.  

Now there's evidence that companies are trying to trick parents into believing those junk foods are actually healthy.  

As if parents didn't have enough to worry about, now we all have to become snack food sleuths!

Television channels that target children are riddled with ads for juice drinks, cereals and snacks. Many include characters aimed at enticing children. But a new study from Dartmouth University 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 adult commercials had scenes of parental figures playing with children and emphasized health benefits.

The problem is researchers say many of the snacks advertised did not meet federal standards for healthy snacks.

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 getting adults to buy junk food, but that is expected to  be the goal of a future report.

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