Looks Healthy But Isn’t – Cereal

Oh how I love taking apart “Looks Healthy But Isn’t” foods – and here’s a great one:  Honey Bunches of Oats Greek Yogurt Cereal.

Here’s the ingredients:  Whole Grain Flakes (Whole Grain Wheat, Sugar, Rice, Corn Syrup, honey bunches of oatsWheat Flour, Yellow Corn Meal, Whole Grain Rolled Oats, Malted Barley Flour, Salt, Canola And/Or Sunflower Oil, Honey, Natural Flavor), Greek Yogurt Granola [Whole Grain Rolled Oats, Brown Sugar, Whole Grain Wheat, Rice Flour, Canola And/Or Sunflower Oil, Milk Protein Concentrate, Corn Syrup, Sugar, Greek Yogurt Powder (Heat Treated After Culturing), Honey, Natural Flavor, Lactic Acid, Malic Acid, Citric Acid], Greek Yogurt Style Coated Granola [Whole Grain Rolled Oats, Brown Sugar, Whole Grain Wheat, Rice Flour, Canola And/Or Sunflower Oil, Corn Syrup, Whey, Sugar, Honey, Greek Yogurt Style Coating (Sugar, Palm Kernel And Palm Oil, Reduced Mineral Whey Powder, Nonfat Dry Milk Solids, Greek Yogurt Powder (Heat Treated After Culturing), Lactic Acid, Soy Lecithin, Salt, Natural Flavor)]. Bht Added To Packaging Material To Preserve Product Freshness.

One cup of this stuff is 47 grams of carbohydrate, add a little milk, probably skim because that means skinny(not), and you’ve added at least 6 to 10 more grams of carb;  add a cup of orange juice, and you’re adding another 25 or so grams of carb. (Remember, carbs = sugar = glucose.)   These super easy to digest carbs break down fast, shoot thru the intestine wall, right into the blood stream; the pancreas responds with big doses of insulin, and you’ve started the Blood Sugar Up, Blood Sugar Plummet cycle, and hormonal disarray.   Your brain, your moods, your arteries, your organs, your mid-section – all take a hit.  Not a great way to start a morning.  And I haven’t even mentioned the ingredients yet!

Count and you’ll find 12 additions of sugar, numerous types of grains that contain gluten and other proteins which are difficult to digest and cause bloat, gas, and leaky gut; vegetable oils that are full of inflammation causing Omega 6s; soy (ugh), Natural Flavors (usually MSG laden), and ****  Greek Yogurt Powder (Heat Treated After Culturing), and Greek Yogurt STYLE Coating.

Let’s talk about this for a second.  Obviously, we’re supposed to associate “healthy” with this cereal because of the ‘greek yogurt’.  Real yogurt is a dairy product that’s gently warmed,  has a culture added to it which eats the milk sugars, and grows  beneficial bacteria.  This cereal contains “greek yogurt POWDER” , which was heat treated after culturing: NOT a health food.  Health wrecking.  There are no live cultures, bc any heat strong enough to make a powder killed the cultures.  And assuming the yogurt was actually made from milk, the sources of “yogurt powder” would be OXIDIZED.  Oxidized fats and cholesterol are dangerous and damaging.

Cereals have enjoyed decades of fame as a great way to start your day, or your kids day.  But they’re not.  They’re carbohydrate bombs, usually loaded with additive / artificial ingredients, and they leave you hungry in a couple of hours, with the brain needing a carb-fix to counter act the blood sugar plummet induced by grains and sugars.

cleaneating picBetter options for breakfast?  Leftovers from dinner; eggs with veggies; smoothies;  my breakfast this morning will be 2 hard boiled eggs with pesto.   If you’re used to traditional, carbohydrate laden morning foods, and honestly can’t imagine eating otherwise – but you WANT to get off the carb train, make a plan.  Pull out a notebook, write some ideas on it.  Then shop, prep, cook, and have Real Whole Foods ready to eat or put together (and NO, cereal is NEVER a RWF, it’s a processed, packaged, refined food product.) and start from there.  Changing is a process, not a automatic switch that’s flipped.

Switching from convenience foods to Real Whole Foods has about a million and one health advantages,  but it can seem overwhelming.  And it is…..at first.  Once it’s a habit, it’s not an effort anymore.   Honestly.  Read, invest some time understanding why it matters that you get off the processed, refined foods, and give your body the RWFs it wants and needs.


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