“So, wait?! You’re going to pay my child $400 to wear a shirt with your company’s logo on it?”
This may very well be the line that has recently dropped out of many parents’ mouths as Weetabix, a popular cereal brand in the U.K., has been experimenting with a whole new type of advertising.
Weetabix is a whole grain cereal similar to America’s shredded wheat-style cereals. The company has begun hiring children with very busy social lives to wear the company logo while they attend their extra-curricular events. In return, the children are earning about $400. The company is intending to send the message that children who eat Weetabix can pack more into their day than their friends who opted for a different breakfast.
This move hasn’t come without controversy. Many opponents of this campaign are claiming that children are being sold as mobile billboards. As these socially active kids attend their clubs and run the sports fields, they are reaching a whole new market of potential consumers.
Like any other child-at-heart, I love cereal. Whether it be a small bowl with breakfast or an afternoon handful, I simply can’t get enough. Cereal can be a good source of nutrients but it can also be an even better source of excess sugar (among other things.) While some cereals are falling to the wayside in a quest to introduce healthier foods to the masses, Fiber One has created a new option for cereal-lovers.
According to the nutrition panel, each ¾ cup serving of the Fiber One 80 Calories Honey Squares contains only 140 mg of sodium and a whopping 10 g of dietary fiber– that’s 40 percent of your recommended daily value! The ingredient list boasts whole grain corn as the number one ingredient but it also contains sucralose, which is fine in moderation although I personally prefer a natural sweetener.
It tasted great as a morning meal and I tried it with both vanilla almond milk and regular skim milk on different occasions. The texture was light and crunchy and it was very filling. I also tried it on top of a yogurt parfait and it added just the right touch of crunch without the amount of sugar that’s in the granola I usually splurge on.
Blame it on rising corn prices or blame it on the embalming fluid, either way, say goodbye to Kellogg’s Corn Pops cereal.
In a category of food that produced over $600 million in revenue last year, Corn Pops only made $74 million, an 18% decrease since the year prior. The breakfast food that is advertised as being “crispy, glazed, crunchy, sweet,” can no longer compete with its peers. Cereals like Cheerios and Frosted Flakes made over $200 million last year.
Not only are big name cereals beating out Corn Pops but the sales of private brands have impacted totals.
Some have argued that the recent price hikes in corn are the culprits behind the demise of this long standing brand. There is some validity to that claim. However, one has to wonder if it’s the ingredients of the cereal that have really lead to the poor sales. Sure, the cereal is “crispy, glazed, crunchy, sweet” but what makes it so?
When you hear high sodium food, you usually think salty snacks: pretzels, chips, crackers and the like. You may be surprised, however, that some of the highest sodium foods aren’t salty tasting at all.
We all should be cutting down on our sodium intake, as recommended by the 2010 American Dietary Guidelines, so head to your pantry and see if any of these sneaky sodium-packed foods have found there way into your kitchen.
Breakfast cereals are notorious for not only being packed full of sugar, but sodium as well. Cereals “are more concentrated in salt than 50 to 60 percent of the items in the salty snack aisle,” says Dr. David Katz, founding director of Yale’s Prevention Research Center.
Looking back on my childhood, I grew up eating a lot of sugary foods for breakfast. From Pop Tarts to Toaster Strudel to Corn Pops, sugar was a big part of the most important meal of the day for me. Of course, at the time, my mom was just happy that I was eating any kind of breakfast before running out the door to school, but now we know so much more about proper nutrition that it’s about time some of the major food manufacturers took at look at cereal’s sugar content. Especially cereals that are obviously targeted to children.
Late last year, General Mills reduced the amount of sugar in its popular cereals Lucky Charms, Trix and Cocoa Puffs. According to The Associated Press, PepsiCo Inc. also launched a new instant oatmeal with 25 percent less sugar. Now you can add another big food manufacturer to the list of reduced-sugar breakfast foods: Post Foods. The company recently told The Associated Press that it will cut the sugar content of its Fruity and Cocoa Pebbles per serving from 11 grams to 9 grams. According to the report, this is in an attempt by all food companies to address consumers’ concerns at the growing childhood obesity epidemic.
The FTC has been cracking down on misleading advertising claims on food products, and Kellogg’s has come under fire for the second time. In November of 2009, the company Cocoa Krispies sported a label that read “Now Helps Support Your Child’s Immunity.” The Food and Drug Administration quickly asked the company to remove the unproven claims from boxes and ads.
The company made other unscientifically supported claims. For example, they advertised that Frosted Mini-Wheats could improve children’s attentiveness and that Rice Krispies had “been improved to include antioxidants and nutrients that your family needs to help them stay healthy.” The FTC asked the company to change their advising campaigns twice in the past year and a half.
MultiGrain Cheerios and The Biggest Loser have partnered to help ensure that this is the year those resolutions stick. Using the MultiGrain Cheerios Web site, you’ll have access to tools and information that will make you the at-home Biggest Loser!
All you need is the code from inside specially marked packages of MultiGrain Cheerios to access the helpful weight loss tools that include:
- BMI Calculator
- 7-Day Meal Plan
- Healthy Recipes
- Daily Workouts
MultiGrain Cheerios is part of the healthy diet the Biggest Loser contestants follow. A serving has 110 calories and 16 grams of fiber – that’s one-third of the daily recommendation in just one bowl of cereal. (more…)
Would you eat four candy bars for breakfast? What if your kids asked for this for breakfast, would you let them? The answer is likely no, because it’s candy and we don’t eat that for breakfast. But did you ever stop to think that the things you typically grab for breakfast, for yourself or your kids, might as well be candy? It’s true! Most of our go-to breakfast items have as much sugar as our favorite candies. No wonder our kids can’t concentrate in school and we don’t have the energy to get through a 10 a.m. meeting without bum-rushing the coffee machine.
If you’re looking to make some healthy changes for the new year, we can tell you that changing the way you do breakfast should be a priority. The cliche that it’s the most important meal of the day is very true, and if you can conquer that meal, then you’ll be able to start conquering the others.
We compared 10 of the most popular breakfast items, some of which actually give the illusion of being health foods, to our favorite candies to show you that a cup of yogurt or bowl of cereal is sometimes no better than the treats Santa left in your stocking. (more…)
You can buy just about anything online these days – even your favorite snacks, granola and cereals. With the click click click of a mouse, I’ve recently come across a few websites that allow you to customize your own snacks, granola and breakfast cereal.
When you customize your snacks online, you’re getting exactly when you want, made fresh to order when you want it, and most offer up nutrition information so you know exactly what you’re eating before you even order.
A lot of food companies have been working toward improving the nutritional profiles of their products. The latest player, General Mills Inc, is lowering the amount of sugar in its breakfast cereals for children to no more than 10 grams per serving from 11 grams a year ago.
This is a move closer to its goal of reducing to single-digit level the number of grams of sugar per serving in all of its cereals advertised to children under 12.
One of the reasons the company has targeted breakfast cereals made for kids is the growing problem of obesity; more children are developing adult health problems such as diabetes and high cholesterol.
General Mills, which also sells Progresso soup and Yoplait yogurt, said it must reduce sugar in tiny, incremental steps, lest consumers notice the difference and stop buying.