Smart cereal options for summer breakfasts
During the cooler months, many people enjoy the soothing warmth of oatmeal for breakfast. Now that the temperature is heating up, many of you may be searching the store aisle for a cooler breakfast alternative.
Companies are very clever when marketing cereals. The packaging and catchy health claims will grab your eye, but may not be nutritionally sound choices. Always look at the nutrition facts food label to guide you in the right direction.
A healthy cereal choice should contain:
• At least 5 grams of fiber per serving.
• Less than 5 grams of sugar per serving.
• At least 3 grams of protein per serving.
• Healthy ingredients. The top ingredients should be “whole wheat” or “wheat bran” – not just “wheat.” Avoid cereals that list hydrogenated oils, artificial dyes or colors, and chemical preservatives as ingredients.
The cereal aisle can be overwhelming with all the choices. Here are some cereals I have found that fit the guidelines and also taste great!
Kashi 7 Whole Grain Puffs
Kellogg’s All-Bran Original
Uncle Sam Flakes
Post Spoon Size Shredded Wheat
Kellogg’s Unfrosted Mini Wheat Bites
General Mill’s Cheerios
Cascadian Farms Multigrain Squares
Nature’s Path Synergy 8 Cereal
An interesting note, according to Cereal F.A.C.T.S. (Food Advertising to Children and Teens Score): Cereal companies spend millions of dollars each year specifically marketing to children. It estimates that the average preschooler will see more than 600 cereal ads in a year with all the colorful and fun characters. Many of these cereals are rated the worst nutritionally. The following are some of the cereals that should be left on the shelf:
Kellogg’s Fruit Loops
General Mills Cinnamon Toast Crunch
Quaker Cap’N Crunch Berries
General Mills Reese’s Puffs
Kellogg’s Corn Pops
Kellogg’s Choconilla Cocoa Krispies
General Mills Lucky Charms
Make a cool and healthy breakfast parfait on a hot summer day! Vary your ingredients depending on what you have at home.
Summer breakfast parfait
Greek vanilla yogurt or low-fat flavored yogurt
Fresh fruit such as bananas, strawberries, kiwi, blueberries
Fiber One Honey Clusters cereal or General Mills Cheerios
Alternate layers of fruit, yogurt and cereal in a glass parfait dish or bowl. Enjoy!