Cereal Junk Food
Nutritionists tell us that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. A balanced morning meal provides the proper nutrients needed to start the day. For children this also means improved concentration and problem-solving skills at school, as well as healthy energy levels.
A recent investigation by the Environmental Working Group in the United States revealed that the vast majority of popular kids’ cereals contain too much sugar and/or sodium (salt). High amounts of sugar are related to tooth decay and obesity, as well as other health problems. Too much salt can increase the risk of high blood pressure later in life and is also related to the obesity epidemic.
Sydney nutritionist Dr Rosemary Stanton says most cereals marketed to children “are junk food; they’re highly sweetened cereals closer to confectionery than to cereal.”
This is not news – these types of reports have been coming out for years. And yet, food manufacturers continue to produce these same cereals with little or no changes, except in their marketing and advertising campaigns. Why is that? Because people keep buying.
- Look for products with less than 15g of sugar per 100g, or up to 25g per 100g if they contain dried fruit.
- Look for products with no more than 600mg of sodium per 100g.
Although published a few years ago, this article provides useful information on all cereals available in Australia, and includes a very detailed table for comparison shopping.