Some of the benefits include that eating any food at all provides fuel for the brain and the body and improve performance. I often tell my clients that eating a good quality cereal is better than having a high fat breakfast or snack. A bowl of whole grain sugar free cereal with low fat milk and fruit makes a hearty and healthy breakfast, after school or before bedtime snack. It may not taste better than a bowl of ice cream or chocolate cake, but it’s a better choice nutritionally.
How do you choose the right cereal? Start by learning to read, and interpret nutrition labels. This includes reading the portion size, since it’s different for each type of cereal. Choose a cereal that has 3 to 5 grams of soluble fiber and preferably made with whole grain. Pick the cereal with the least amount of sugar not only by reading the nutrition label, but the ingredients list. It’s also important to know that there are many types of sugar with other names. Add your own sweetener to taste with the goal to decrease the amount of sugar your palate requires. For children I always recommend not adding any sugar and serving it with fruits instead. Check out the calories per serving, because they’re all different. It’s preferable to choose the lower calorie dry cereals since most likely they have the lowest amounts of fat and sugars. This is particularly important for those trying to control their weight or that lead less active lives. If you're trying to gain weight top your dry or hot cereal with our delicious Super Topping on page 51 of Flavorful Fortified Food - Recipes to Enrich Life.