Love It, Like It, Hate It: “Healthy” Breakfast Cereals

Breakfast sets the tone for the day when it comes to our energy levels, our ability to focus and learn, and even our cravings.  The right breakfast leaves us energized and feeling solid until lunchtime.  The wrong breakfast leaves us bottomed out, craving more carbs.  And since cereal is one of the more popular breakfast choices, we’re Getting the Skinny with Molly on the best and worst of the seemingly healthful cereals!

 

Note:  Serving sizes for cereal can range from ½ cup to 1 – ½ cups – so to make it easier to compare stats side-by-side, the following nutrition facts are for approximately two-ounce servings, unless otherwise specified.  

 

 

LOVE IT!

Good ratio of protein to carbohydrate; relatively low in sugar 

 

Kay’s Naturals Cereal (in Apple Cinnamon, Honey Almond, or French Vanilla)

  • Per cup: 120 calories, 18 grams carbohydrate, 4 grams fiber, 3 grams sugar, 12 grams protein
  • Ingredients include non-GMO soy protein isolate, non-GMO corn flour, non-GMO rice flour, tapioca starch, fibersol, pea fiber, honey, sugar, stevia
  • Get the Skinny Promo Code: Enter NOLA2018 at checkout for 30% off of Kay’s Natural’s protein-fortified cereals and snacks!  Promo code expires May 31, 2018.

 

 

Puffins (top choice as kid-friendly cereal)

  • Per cup: 120 calories, 32 grams carbohydrate, 7 grams fiber, 6 grams sugar, 4 grams protein
  • Ingredients include corn flour, whole grain oat flour, cane sugar, oat fiber, corn bran, molasses.

 

 

LIKE IT!

 

Kellogg’s Special K Protein Cereal (original)

  • Per cup: 160 calories, 27 grams carbohydrate, 4 grams fiber, 9 grams sugar, 13 grams protein
  • Ingredients include whole wheat, wheat gluten, sugar, rice, soy protein isolate, sucralose (Splenda).

 

Fiber One

  • Per cup: 120 calories, 50 grams carbohydrate, 28 grams fiber, 0 sugar, 4 grams protein
  • Ingredients include whole grain wheat, corn bran, caramel color, cellulose gum, sucralose

 

 

HATE IT!

At least 2-4x more sugar than protein or fiber

 

Raisin Bran

  • Per cup: 190 calories, 46 grams carbohydrate, 7 grams fiber, 18 grams sugar, 5 grams protein
  • Ingredients include whole grain wheat, raisins, wheat bran, sugar, brown sugar syrup

 

Protein Cheerios

  • Per 1 1/4 cup: 210 calories, 41 grams carbohydrate, 4 grams fiber, 17 grams sugar, 7 grams protein
  • Ingredients include whole grain corn, “clusters” made with sugar, corn syrup, white flour, molasses, honey; followed by more sugar, whole grain oats, oil, refiners syrup, corn syrup solids and brown sugar

 

 

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Want more from Molly?  Click here to sign up for  Ochsner Eat Fit Nutrition Bites, her weekly e-newsletter with links to Get the Skinny TV segments here on WGNO, and her weekly column in NOLA.com|The Times-Picayune!   And you can follow Molly on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram:  @MollyKimballRD