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Study: Cartoons sway kids' choices of cereal

Milk is being added to a bowl of cereal in this undated file image.

March 8, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
Cartoon characters really do affect what a child wants to eat and what they want their parents to buy, according to a new study.

Researchers had 80 kids between the ages of 4 and 6 taste dry cereal and then rate it.

They found kids who saw a popular media character on the box rated it higher than the same cereal without a character on the box.

Surprisingly, the children rated a cereal called Healthy Bits higher than the same cereal called Sugar Bits. Researchers believe healthy eating messages are resonating with children.

The study was published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine.