DENVER -- Are fast food companies brainwashing your kids? A new study says golden arches and clowns on cereal boxes draw kids in at a very young age and keep them mystified, sometimes for life.
Researchers at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and the University of Kansas Medical Center showed kids ages 10-14 popular fast food and cereal logos along with nonfood related brands like FedEx.
An MRI brain scan showed that when the kids saw the fast food logos their brains lit up like a "Christmas tree."
Denver resident Tricia Glennon says even though many fast food restaurants now offer healthy alternatives to fries and burgers, she wants to keep them from developing a habit of "going through the drive-thru" and says, "It's all the packaging, what makes them want it has nothing to do with the food."
Dr. Emily Hass of Denver Health Medical Center says the key to keeping your children healthy is to get them interested in vibrant and colorful foods that pack a nutritious punch. "I know kids aren't wild about vegetables but it's a good idea and if they want something sweet, pick a fruit they may like like a banana, mangoes or peaches".
Once you tackle that hurdle, all you have to do is figure out a way to compete with the surprise toy that's usually found in fast food kids' meals.
For more information on the study you can visit http://www.medicaldaily.com/articles/12318/20120925/fast-food-logos-imprinted-childrens-brains.htm