Saturday, June 28, 2008

Sugar Cereals - What's Your Position?

My mom NEVER bought them. We didn't have a large variety in our cupboards: Cheerios, Rice Krispies and Oatmeal. And as a kid, oatmeal is just blech!

I thought my mom was so square!

Now, as a mother I am just disgusted by all of the sugar cereals that are pro-ported to be "healthy". These cereals have over 15 grams of sugar per serving! That's a lot for a little kid for breakfast! Kellogg just put out a new line of lower-sugars but they're still around 12 grams. That's not low -it's just a concession. I don't care what federal guidelines are for nutritional content for kids - look at a lot of American kids and you decide what should be the limit - less than 12 grams, for sure (especially for breakfast).

I am encouraged that some companies are doing their best to make tasty cereals without all the sugar. Fruity Cheerios (a little high but still reasonable), Frosted Mini Wheats, Kix, and the varieties of Life and Chex. I still buy a lot of Cheerios and Rice Krispies though.

I buy sugar cereals as a special treat. I bought some Lucky Charms the other day (11 grams of sugar - have you noticed how many more marshmallows there are vs. when we were young - wow!) and of course SP eats all of the marshmallows first and then doesn't want to eat the rest. But that was the deal when I bought them so she *forces* them down.

Fortunately, I've started her off on a good foot. Not totally depriving her so she doesn't go crazy when she gets some, but also shooting for healthy, low-sugar breakfasts. I realize there are *vitamins* and *calcium* and other junk but I think it's just those manufacturer's way of getting away with putting so much sugar in them.

Yeah, sugar sells.

8 backward glances:

Christy said...

Definately, sugar sells. But there is very little nutritional value in a box of cereal if any at all. I admit however that I do feed my children this zero nutritional value meal more often than I'd like and more often than I used to out of pure laziness. I do try to avoid the sugar cereals but do not consider any cereal to be a good breakfast...it is empty food and really doesn't keep them sustained for very long anyway. A good breakfast to start a good day goes a long way. Now if your talking a good quality granola, it's a different story but granola is way more expensive.

Aislinn said...

Hehehehe - my grandfather used to say "if you're going to eat cereal for breakfast then you might as well stick your head out the car window and let the air fill your belly". I always thought he was crazy, but as a mom I can see that he had a point. We like the sugar cereals - but like you, I use this as a treat. We mostly have cherrios with fruit (which helps to make it somewhat sweet). Fortunately for me, my kids love oatmeal - especially with fruit or honey in it.

Rachel said...

Its funny the things we thought our mothers were square about we now realize had so much merit.
My kids and husband are sugar cereal eaters. But we try to get eggs and pancakes in during the week as well. We also have a limited supply of options, so once it's gone they have to eat what is left. My favorite cereal as a kid was Cookie Crisp, but I only got in on rare occasions.

Amy said...

christy: i think there's more nutritional value than you're giving credit for but still, it can't be a complete meal, unless we're just rushed or lazy. I'll bet SP would love granola!

aislinn: i put the low sugar flavored coffee creamers in oatmeal and that is so good! but honey is probably more healthy.

Rachel: i've never had Cookie Crisp but just the name makes me think, "snack, not breakfast food".

Melissa said...

I am hoping to wean my husband off sugar cereals before my children are old enough to realize that there are other choices besides the cheerios and oatmeal that I give them

... To the Beat of My Own Drum said...

Everything in moderation ladies. Special treats are great and it won't kill your kids or SP to have them.

If you want some alternatives I would suggest Puffins, or Clifford Cereal. You can always visit a Whole Foods or HEalth place to find more but these are the ones I know of. You'll pay more but can usually find them on mark down.

There is sugar in just about everything and it is not necessarily bad for you. It's the processed stuff you have to filter.

Creatively, T

abelle | Only in Silence said...

Just bloghopping! ;o)

Mrs Furious said...

I don't buy sugar cereals in general... but I personally LOVE them... so as a treat (dessert) I'll occasionally get Lucky Charms (yes you are totally right... there are actually too many marshmallows now). Kid also eats the marshmallows out. I've taken to cutting it with Cherrios which tastes just like the shapes anyway and gives a slightly healthier balance to the marshmallows.