Consumer Reports

Consumer Reports: Pick a Healthy Breakfast Cereal

Consumer Reports says plenty of cereal is nutritious, and they have some tips on how to pick a good one.

It’s best if you can hit four main things: Protein, a complex carbohydrate, a dairy and a fruit.

And the nice thing about cereal is that it’s a quick and easy way to get all those things if you throw in a sliced banana or something like that. The health and nutrition team at Consumer Reports says choosing the right cereal is key.

Start with a 100 percent whole grain. Find a cereal with a whole grain as the first ingredient. Whole grains have been linked to a reduced risk of type II diabetes, cancer and heart disease. Another benefit is that they’re going to fill you up, so you’re not going to get that mid-morning hunger attack.

Next, suss out the sugars. If you really want a sweetened cereal, choose one with no more than eight grams of sugar per serving.

You also need to pay attention to protein. It may help keep blood sugar steady and helps with weight control. Cereal usually has a few grams of protein, but if you add cow’s milk or yogurt, you’re going to get a decent amount of protein.

Finally, watch your portions. People often pour more than they realize. So grab your favorite bowl and measure out a serving – so you recognize what a proper portion really is.

A few good picks? Post Shredded Wheat, Alpen Muesli No Sugar Added, and, if you want something a little sweeter, Cheerios Multi-Grain. All three performed well for taste and nutrition, in a recent Consumer Reports analysis.

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