Cereals are an easy and convenient breakfast option for people. It is especially ideal for people who are busy to make fresh breakfast in the morning. These cereals boast of impressive health claims and claim to fulfil nutritional needs. But the question that arises is whether these claims are true? Are these breakfast cereals really healthy?
What is Breakfast cereal?
Breakfast cereal is made of the processed grains and is often consumed with milk, yoghurt, nuts, and fruits. Here’s a look at how the breakfast cereals are made:
– The grains are processed into fine flour and then cooked.
– The flour is mixed with sugar, water, and chocolate for flavour.
– Some breakfast cereals are produced via extrusion which is a high-temperature process that
makes use of a machine for shaping the cereal.
– The next step is drying the cereals.
– The last step is shaping the cereals in starts, loops, balls, rectangles, etc.
– The breakfast cereals may also be flaked, puffed, or shredded and coated with frosting or chocolate before they are dried.
Here’s a look at some eye-opening facts about breakfast cereals that you should know:
– Misleading health claims
The breakfast cereals are marketed as being healthy such as low-fat, whole grain and what not. But having a close look at the ingredients will give you an insight that they are made of refined grains and sugar. The major issue is that people are unaware of the facts and actually believe these claims and expect health benefits from consuming these items.
– Marketed towards Children
The breakfast cereal manufacturers often market their products towards children. They make use of cartoons, animated characters, and bright colours to attract children. The kids force their parents to buy them these cereals. Parents are mostly unaware of the facts and give in to the claims made by
marketers. Food marketing is also considered a contributing factor for childhood obesity and diet-related diseases.
– Weight gain
Most of the breakfast cereals are flavoured with preservatives, sugars, and food additives that make them more appetising for the kids. It has been observed that regular consumption of cereals can lead to weight gain.
– Ultra-refined grains
The breakfast cereals are full of refined grains and sugar and low in nutrition. They are highly processed, and most of their fibre and nutrients are lost once they are made.
– High in sugar and refined carbs
If you begin your day with high-sugar breakfast cereal, it will increase your blood sugar levels. But after a few hours, your sugar levels may stoop, and your body will crave for a meal or snack which creates a vicious cycle of over-eating. Excessive sugar consumption is associated with the risk of type 2 diabetes, cancer, and heart diseases.
What to look for in healthy breakfast cereal?
1. Limit sugar
You should choose a cereal that contains only 5 grams or lesser sugar in each serving. Read the label to find out the sugar content.
2. High fibre
Cereals which contain at least 3 grams of fibre are the best. Fibre consumption is beneficial for health in several ways.
3. Focus on portions
Since the breakfast cereals are crunchy and tasty, people can easily consume large amounts. Thus, limit your portions to avoid consuming more calories.
You can also make some healthy breakfast items and avoid consuming processed food. Download the Healthsum Life app for healthy recipes and other fitness related requirements for you and your family.