Is the only thing that makes cereal healthy milk? Any products that claim it is fortified with vitamins is the warning bell. If a product is fortified for any reason then it in simple terms all the ‘real’ food has been processed out and vitamins and minerals are added to fortify the product, and cereals are the worse culprit of this. Cereals are processed and full of sugar. This blog will outline why you should avoid cereal and how you can make your breakfast healthier.
The truth about cereal
Marketing makes cereal sound very healthy. Cereal has added banana, blueberries, strawberries. The packaging looks great, the claims are amazing and what about the idea that ‘breakfast is the most important part of your day?’ It is all marketing from big brands to entice you into an easy, on the go, healthy start to the day. The clever ‘fresh’ looking packaging and the use of energetic, fit images lead you to believe that your cereal product is good for you. When sadly it really isn’t.
Kelloggs himself made up the phrase ‘breakfast is the most important part of your day’.
Marketing and strategising come into all big brands, there are government guidelines of course, but these can be sidestepped. When Kellogg’s announced that they were going to add the ‘traffic light’ labeling to ‘some’ of their packets the reasoning was to let consumers know how much sugar was in each serving, it was a step in the right direction. This came about from pressure from consumers.
However, there can be up 6 different types of sugar in some packets of cereal. Cereal manufacturers easily work around the ‘traffic light’ labeling by simply reducing their recommendations. If the sugar content is too high, brands simply reduce their ‘serving size suggestion’ to fit the sugar recommendations.
Based on the W.H.O. (World Health Organisation) you should be consuming no more than 6 teaspoons of sugar a day. And yet here are some scary statistics:
- – Frosties contains 37g sugar per 100g which is equivalent of 9.5 teaspoons
- – Crunchy Nut cornflakes 35g sugar per 100g which is the same as 9 teaspoons
- – Cornflakes have 8g sugar and Sainsbury’s own brand have less at 7.2g
- – Weetabix is 4.4g of sugar which is one teaspoon
One teaspoon a daily Weetabix may sound okay, but if you add a sugary drink to your breakfast like freshly squeezed orange or apple juice that is another two teaspoons PLUS a healthy snack of an apple adds a further two teaspoons. At lunch, a brown bread sandwich will add another 1 or 2 teaspoons. Or how about a Go Ahead apple bake? That is 27.7g and 2 teaspoons of sugar.
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The hidden sugar in cereal
Sugar comes in many different forms and names and is added to all processed foods in different names to disguise the amount. There are over 50 different names for sugar, look out for these:
- – Barley malt.
- – Brown rice syrup.
- – Corn syrup.
- – Corn syrup solids.
- – Dextrin.
- – Dextrose.
- – Fructose
Fructose from fruit is very interesting, a whole piece of fruit is going to contain less fructose as the water content and the bulk of the fruit and fibre will help to reduce the sugar hit to your body. However, its manufactured name ‘fructose’ fruit sugar keeps the GI ranking down simply because they are digested directly by the liver, not the digestive system. High fructose contributes to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
Cereals are not only heavily loaded with sugar they are also highly processed which contributes to your rollercoaster hungry feeling that follows you around all day.
Your ‘hangry’ rollercoaster
Starting your day with a sugary cereal will set you up for a high and low energy flow all day. Being hungry all the time, or showing signs of ‘hangry’ are signs that you are burning glucose and/or not gaining enough nutrients. Adding fruit and milk is the only thing that makes cereal healthy. Full fat milk will reduce the GI of your ‘healthy’ looking cereal. Even granola needs a rethink…
The truth about granola
Whilst granola has oats with added fibre and iron, yet the total sugar content can be extremely high. Adding nuts, seeds and some protein helps but granola also contains added sugar with healthy-sounding names pushing it up as 29g which is the equivalent of 7 teaspoons of sugar!
How can you make a healthier breakfast?
The honest answer is don’t have any. Start extending your breakfast time and introducing a personalised Intermittent Fasting routine that works for you. If you want my help drop me a line. It isn’t complicated but it does have to start with an understanding of your own metabolism, your activity levels and your body type all need to go into the mix to get a good understanding of what will work for you easily. Would you like to get it right? Book a time that suits to chat You will come away from our conversation feeling inspired, motivated, and ready to grab life and deal with whatever it throws you, I guarantee. Whether you decide to work with me or not you will become very clear in your goals and have a clear awareness of where you need and want to go. Let’s chat – click here to book your time
If you would like to understand your body more, get to grips with the nutritional balance that will work for you feel free to book in your free consultation time with me. You and I will discuss where you are currently and where you would love to be in 3 or 6 months’ time. I look forward to chatting with you
Get Gorgeous is a journey together – yours and mine.
PS. Gorgeous! is your insight into great health and vitality Gorgeous! how to look and feel fantastic every day. Click here to find out about your Gorgeous book
“Gorgeous! is the perfect read for anyone looking to revolutionise not only their relationship with food and movement but also their relationship with themselves. With Adele’s reassurance and expert guidance, any woman will feel inspired and empowered to begin their journey to prioritising themselves and their health – everybody is perfect and everybody is gorgeous!”
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