In an age when the likes of Kellogg’s and General Mills are able to lobby the government in order to be allowed to put all manner of health claims on their foods, it can be incredibly difficult to figure out what is okay to pick up when you hit the cereal aisle.
You’ll typically see claims such as:
- 100% Wholegrain;
- Enriched with vitamins and minerals;
- Helps lower cholesterol;
- High in fiber; and
But in reality, when you look at the ingredients list you begin to realize that this is just a marketing ploy to sell what is, in reality, a Frankenstein food that has no place being a staple in your diet!
Watch out for ingredients such as:
- Sugars (even if it says all-natural cane sugar);
- High-fructose corn syrup;
- Hydrogenated fats and oils; and
- Additives such as sodium benzoate, aspartame, plus countless more
What you’re actually getting is a refined grain product that is almost completely devoid of nutrition, providing your body with very little of what it needs and too much of what it really doesn’t want.
Eating refined products such as this can lead to the following:
- Weight gain;
- Insulin-resistance, type II diabetes;
- Increased LDL or “bad” cholesterol;
- Decreased HDL or “good” cholesterol;
- Increased likelihood of various cancers, particularly of the bowel and colon; and
- Suppressed immunity leading to greater susceptibility of common illnesses
If you’re choosing a cereal product because it tastes good then just be aware of the possible health implications, but if you’re looking for something healthy then it would be wise to opt for the following:
- Steel-cut or rolled oatmeal;
- Oat or wheat bran; and
- Low-sugar or homemade granola; or
- Avoiding grains altogether and opting for organic eggs and bacon.
Limit your grain consumption as much as possible to avoid unwanted weight gain and blood sugar spikes. Have you been eating cereal? Let me know in the comments section below.