Childhood obesity is at an all time high and this is the first generation that has a shorter life expectancy than previous generations. And now, in an AP article by Lindsey Tanner, “Anything made by McDonald’s tastes better,” preschoolers said in a study that powerfully demonstrates how advertising can trick the taste buds of young children.

Even carrots, milk and apple juice tasted better to the kids when they were wrapped in the familiar packaging of the Golden Arches.

A recent study by Dr. Tom Robinson said that kid’s perception of taste was “physically altered by the branding.” The Stanford University researcher said it was remarkable how children so young were already influenced by advertising.

This study shows the power that advertisers have on our children and demonstrates the responsibility that parents have in controlling food choices and in limiting television. As a weight-loss professional, I hesitate to work with children, not because the children are challenging, but I have had too many instances of an obese child leaving my office excited about making changes in how they eat, only to be picked up by a parent and driven to McDonald’s because the parents did not have the time to prepare dinner.