Yummm...cereal! The perfect treat for morning, noon or night. Growing up, my mom always bought Apple Jacks, and Smacks. Ha...remember Smacks, maybe that's an 90's thing, haven't seen em' in a while. My kids used to love Frosted Flakes and Fruity Pebbles and D would go crazy, every Halloween- for Frankenberries!
It is said that 94% of Americans have cereal in their homes, but do you really know what your eating? And what's worse, you try and choose a "healthy" cereal, but really, when it comes down to the label, they are just as bad.
Cereal was one of the first processed foods. It made life easier for Americans, and required no skill to prepare it. That's why it is known as one of the biggest success stories of the modern food industry. But let's take a look at some the worst ingredients found in this staple.
BHT – There is controversial research, that links this preservative to cancer, and it’s believed to be an endocrine disruptor that interferes with your hormones. They have never been proven safe. BHT is also included on the Dirty Dozen List of Food Additives from the Environmental Working Group. BHT is found in many cereals, including: Special K, Rice Krispies, Life, Chex, Fiber One, Wheaties and Smart Start. This ingredient isn’t allowed in cereals in Europe, so the brands reformulate their cereals to sell them overseas. Bullshit, right!
Artificial Colors – This ingredient, derived from petroleum, is linked to several health issues, including allergies and hyperactivity in children. Europe actually requires that any food containing these dyes to carry a warning label: “May Have an Adverse Effect on Activity and Attention in Children.” Artificial colors are lurking in lots of kids cereals like, Captain Crunch, Apple Jacks, and Fruity Cheerios, but even in cereals you’d never expect like Life Cereal, Kellogg’s Smart Start, and Special K Fruit & Yogurt. The U.S. needs this labeling too! I think more parents would take precaution, if they saw the big warning label on the box.
Genetically modified (GMO) ingredients – We avoid GMO's at all cost. Did you know that these ingredients aren't required to undergo any FDA pre-market safety assessments?! They also increase herbicide and pesticide use, which leads to increased food cost and lower availability. Perhaps most importantly, as put by the respected scientists at Consumer Reports, “There is global scientific agreement that genetic engineering has the potential to introduce allergens and toxins in food crops, to change the nutritional value, and to create other unintended changes that may affect human health”. This ingredient does not belong in our food! Check out the March Against Monsanto page for more details and to rise up.
These 3 brands not only refuse to remove GMO's, but pay big bucks to fight the labeling initiatives in the US. Profit over people, every time. But you have the choice to opt out, do better, choose better!
Quaker- Quaker’s parent company, Pepsico, has spent over $8.8 million to fight GMO labeling initiatives in the U.S.
Kelloggs- has spent over $1.8 million to fight GMO labeling initiatives in the U.S.
General Mills- has spent over $3.6 million to fight GMO labeling initiatives in the U.S.
Check the labels on the Non GMO cereal as well, if you see Soy Flakes, Natural Flavors, Canola, Cane Syrup, or Soy Protein Isolate...steer clear of that cereal too!
One of the worst cereals you can feed your family, is Froot Loops. It's actually one of the top 5 Kellogg's cereals, with millions of Americans feeding this to their kids. This is another example of the double standard in the quality of food we recieve in the U.S. versus other countries. In Europe, they skip the BHT, vegetable oil, and Blue no.1, Red no. 40, Blue no. 2 and Yellow no. 6. Instead they use natural colors derived from spinach, carrots, blackcurrent and paprika. They also removed oils and BHT for the peeps overseas. This fact should make you livid! And if that's not enough, GMO Free USA tested it and found 100% of the corn in Froot Loops is GMO, and contained "significant levels" of the insanely toxic pesticide, Glyphosate.
Geez...what cereal CAN I eat?! Here is list of our faves!
Ezekiel 4:9 Sprouted Grain Cereal – This cereal contains grains that are whole and sprouted, making it easier for your body to digest. It won’t spike your blood sugar like flour-based cereal grains do. I love the Almond, and my kiddos love the cinnamon raisin.
Purely Elizabeth Ancient Grain Granola – Comes in 4 different flavors: original, cranberry pecan, pumpkin fig, and blueberry hemp, made with healthy ingredients like quinoa, amaranth, chia seeds, and raw virgin coconut oil.
2 Moms In The Raw Cereal – This grain-free cereal is full of healthy fruit and nuts like almonds, walnuts, bananas, coconut, and dates.
We skip Dairy in our home, and choose Almond, Coconut or Hemp milk instead. If you choose dairy, always go with organic.
Did you know about these awful ingredients in your cereal? Do you have a natural cereal you love? Please share your thoughts.