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Sugary cereal

September 20, 2011

Albertsons was having a great sale on cereal, so of course I bought some There were all varieties available: good old Cheerios, Chocolate Cheerios, Golden Grahams, and more.
Now, before I go into this any further, I have a confession to make: my sweet tooth is at least as bad as my kids’. So, as I walked down the cereal aisle, I put in a few boxes of the sugary stuff in with the Cheerios and Total.
With all of this “bad” cereal in my cart, I ducked my head in shame and made a beeline for the checkout.
This is the memory that came to mind as I put a handful of craisins in my bran flakes and saw the nutrition label. The sugar content in just a 1/3 cup serving is 26 grams! That’s twice the amount of sugar in most bowls of sugary cereal!
Then I started thinking about other things, like yogurt. Yogurt is not something I would be ashamed to be seen buying for my kids in the store with all of the touted health benefits like calcium, and the much debates benefits of the live active cultures (“good bacteria). But most yogurts have somewhere around 24-29 grams of sugar – at least twice as much sugar as even the sugariest of cereals. And usually, unless it’s greek yogurt or plain yogurt, it uses a sugar substitute, which has been shown to be less than ideal for our health.
And, to top it all off, sugary cereals have added vitamins, some as much as 25% – 50% of the recommended daily value. My chocolatey Cheerios has vitamin A, C, D, B6, B12, calcium, iron, 50% of the daily value of Folic Acid, and believe me, the list goes on.
That said, I’m not writing this to get sugary cereal in the homes of families everywhere. I will still limit the amount of sugary cereal my kids (and I) eat, especially with the lack of dietary fiber in most sugary cereals, but I think it’s important to put the foods that are touted as “healthy foods” in perspective.
And I’m not saying to give up yogurt or craisins, either. What I am saying is that we need to have moderation – to eat a little of everything, being careful in completely shunning one type of food, and over indulging on another because someone told us it was healthy. At the very least, I am hoping to walk through a grocery store with my cart holding a box or two of sugary cereal next to the veggies, whole grain bread, and yogurt, and be able to hold my head high.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Carrie permalink
    September 20, 2011 3:38 pm

    I was SO bummed to find my Fiber One cereal had sugar substitutes after I brought it home. And I don’t think I want to LOOK at my favorite granola! Having said all that… I’m currently eating pop tarts. Which I’m pretty sure don’t have added vitamins or nutrients. 😛

    • September 20, 2011 4:39 pm

      Haha! My favorite pop tarts are the s’mores and the chocolate chip cookie. Not even the fruit flavored ones.

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