Uh oh, there's a new Health Hall of Shame in town, and you don't have to drive back in time to Bedrock to see it.
Post Foods' goal to "innovate and bring new and different flavors to tempt the taste buds of our fans" (here) came to fruition (well, actually there's no fruit) in the new rainbow sherbet Ice Cream Pebbles cereal, an artificially and naturally sweetened cereal made up of fruit-flavored flakes.
Ingredients like Yellow 6, Red 40, Yellow 5, Blue 1, and artificial flavor don't cut it when it comes to a nutritious breakfast, but simply because of its added vitamins and minerals this article would have you believe otherwise. At the same time, 0 grams of fiber, 9 grams of sugar, and one teensy gram of protein make this cereal nutritionally poor.
Yabba dabba don't.
So what's a person to do, when you want cereal that tastes good and know you should have one that also nourishes you?
I've chosen my top 6 options for healthier breakfast cereals.
1. For the simple morning routine:
Nature's Path Whole O's
Nature's Path Whole O's are made with 5 ingredients that are all organic, non-gmo project certified, and gluten-free. Plus, each 2/3 cup serving offers 3 grams of fiber and only 4 grams (that's one teaspoon) of sugar. Add to your serving of Whole O's two tablespoons of hemp seeds, a couple blueberries, and some tigernut milk and you've got yourself a breakfast that will have you feeling full all morning long.
2. For the kid in us all:
Barbara's Snackimals Cinnamon Crunch
Though your kids (or you, I'm not judging!) may love General Mills' Cinnamon Toast Crunch, swap out one serving of those for Barbara's Snackimals Cinnamon Crunch for 1 extra gram each of fiber and protein, and almost a teaspoon less of sugar! Plus, you can add extra own cinnamon over top for more of an antioxidant boost.
3. FOR THOSE WHO ARE ON THE GO & LOVE ESPRESSO:
It's simple: 1) Open the lid. 2) Pour in cold water (or milk/mylk). 3) Stir (with the enclosed spoon).
OMGsh, my new fave discovery is this Vigilant Eats Espresso Maca Mulberry Superfood Cereal. The flavorful superfood ingredients - like mulberries, cacao nibs, espresso (yes, espresso) and maca, maple, and mesquite powders - are packed alongside gluten-free oats, hemp flour, and cinnamon. Need I say more? #YUM.
4. For the #bosslady (or #bossman):
Hey would you rather have 8 grams of sugar or 19 grams of sugar (that's like having 7 individual Starburst chews) for a cereal that is named the same? I thought you'd pick 8! Erewhon's Raisin Bran Cereal is the raisin bran choice with less sugar per equivalent serving. It's made with 4 ingredients (wheat kernels, raisins, sea salt, and barley malt), and has 6 grams of fiber and 6 grams of protein, too. Choose that cereal, and choose it like a boss.
5. For Teens and Adults who want something a bit different:
Want something more than cereal and milk? I got you. Nature's Path Apple Cinnamon Chia, Buckwheat, and Hemp Qi'a is a super clean "cereal." These aren't your traditional flakes, but rather a blend of chia seeds, buckwheat groats, and hemp seeds, so it offers great nutrient balance in terms of protein, omegas, fiber, healthy carbs...the list goes on. Qi'a can be served like a cereal (with dairy or nondairy milk) or served like a pudding thanks to chia seeds and their ability to swell in liquid. This version is made with raisins, freeze-dried apples, and cinnamon, too so you get a little extra flava-flave.
6. for in your trail mix or on top of your yogurt:
Ezekiel 4:9's Almond Sprouted Whole Grain Cereal is a fave addition on top of Greek yogurt or in a trail mix for a healthy carb addition and a yummy crunch. Its ingredients, including wheat, barley, millet, lentils, soybeans, and spelt, are sprouted; this helps enable better nutrient absorption. This cereal contains 6 grams of filling fiber and 8 grams of plant based protein.
Even though Ice Cream Pebbles entered the Health Hall of Shame, it's good to know that the cereal landscape is changing thanks to game changing cereals like these 6 that offer both great taste and better nutrition with clean ingredients! In addition, just this week General Mills announced its plans to remove artificial colors and flavors from all of their cereals (like Trix, Cocoa Puffs, and Lucky Charms) by 2017. Maybe old Mr. Flintstone can learn a thing or two from the General.
What is your favorite cereal? Comment below to share with me what your favorites are and why!