Take Another Look At Your Cereal Label....Is it as healthy as it could be?

Since I talked about a healthy cereal this weekend, I thought I would continue the discussion on what you should actually look for in a “healthy” cereal. Now I warn you, this post clearly shows the Nutrition Teacher in me!  In fact, I actually taught a lesson on this exact topic.

You want to choose cereals that are whole grains. This is getting easier to do now that General Mills and  Kelloggs make a large variety of whole grain cereals. Just look for this symbol on the front of the box:

A good whole grain cereal should supply at least 3 grams of fiber per serving.  If it has less than 3 grams it may be higher in sugar or other unnecessary ingredients.

A good whole grain cereal should have no more than 8 grams of sugar (unless it contains fruit).   Those cereals containing dried fruit (raisins, strawberries, etc) can have 15-25 grams of sugar because you have to account for the natural sugar in the fruit.

A good whole grain cereal should have no more than 3 grams of total fat. Of course there is an exception to this rule too. If your cereal contains nuts, 5 or 6 grams of fat per serving is reasonable.

I will admit that although all my cereals are whole grains, not all of them follow these guidelines.
 Okay, so go to your pantry and check the label of your cereal box. Does your cereal fit into these healthy guidelines?

Here’s quick users guide:

What to look for
Per serving
3 grams or more
8 grams or less
15-25 grams With fruit
3 grams or less
5-6 grams with nuts

What's your favorite cereal?


  1. Good to know! I hope I remember the next time I go shopping!

  2. I haven't had cereal in years. My regular breakfast is scrambled or hard boiled eggs. If I'm on vacation or eating out maybe pancakes, but cereal just isn't my thing.