commercial breakfast cereal
I’m consistently appalled by the verbal sleight of hand by which companies have hoodwinked people into applying the term “whole grain” to a product as processed and denatured as breakfast cereal.
The post “Survey Your Cereal” by Jennifer LaRue Huget, published online by the Washington Post today, falls hard for this ploy. (Thanks go to the Weston A. Price Foundation for the Facebook post that alerted me to it.)
LaRue, co-writer of the Post’s “The Checkup” health news blog and apparently a prodigious consumer of processed corporate breakfast cereal, has bought into the idea that simply not removing the bran from a grain — that’s what seems to be meant by “whole grains” in this context — is enough to make it good for you, no matter what gets done to it after that.
She bemoans the fact the the Cocoa Krispies in her pantry are made of rice: “not a whole grain.” That merits from her a cry of “Yikes!” (Although it’s not clear whether the Yikes is directed at the rice, or that sugar is the second ingredient.) But the removal of the bran is the least of the problems with a product as fake as Cocoa Krispies. And it certainly isn’t enough to make it much worse than any of the other junk she lists as being on her breakfast shelf.
Happily, by the time I read the post, a number of people championing real-food breakfasts had already commented. Here’s the comment I added:
The chocolate that this writer is so embarrassed about including is the most (only?) healthful thing in all the ingredients listed. That’s the chocolate content itself, not whatever insipid blend is actually in the cereal.
Not that even that belongs at the breakfast table. Sweet breakfast = brain fog. Breakfast should provide fat for stable fuel that lasts till the afternoon, and protein for muscle building and repair.
Bacon and eggs, anyone? Skip the OJ, while you’re at it.
Read Alan Watson’s Cereal Killer to find out why and how extruded, processed grains are a TERRIBLE thing to include in your diet — and why breakfast is the worst time of day to eat it.
Posted by: VesnaVK | February 22, 2011 10:48 AM
What do you think? Do you think that including the bran of the wheat makes a difference in the overall healthfulness of an industrial food-like product like Frosted Mini-Wheats? Drop a comment here and share your thoughts with other How To Cook With Vesna readers.