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Why Cereal for Breakfast is a Bad Choice!

Why Cereal for Breakfast is a Bad Choice!

Saturday 3rd February 2018
Jonny Carter

Probably most people eat cereal for breakfast. Why? Well it's quick, you just pour the cereal into the bowl add some milk and it's ready. In today's stressful, busy, lifestyles many see it as the easiest option. Another reason for the 'cereal style' breakfast is that many people think it is a healthy option. The reason for this is due to mis-leading marketing. You often see adverts for various cereals saying that they are low in fat, in most cases this is true, but the problem with low fat products is that they are often high in sugar! Leading me on to my point why cereal isn't a good breakfast option.

Cereal is generally high in sugar. This means when you eat it first thing in the morning it will cause your blood sugar to rise rapidly. This then will quickly drop as your pancreas releases copious amounts of insulin so that the sugar can be absorbed in the liver and muscles. However, there is a problem with this....the liver and muscles can only store a limited .amount of glucose and therefore once these stores are full the glucose is converted into fat and stored in the adipose tissue around your waste and hips. The drop in blood sugar also causes fatigue and hunger leading you to go hunting for the biscuit tin by mid-morning, hence eating more sugary snacks so the cycle continues. Even if your cereal is low in sugar it can be still heavily processed. An example of this could be rice cereal from Holland and Barrett, yes, it is sugar free, but it is high in something called the Glycaemic index. The glycaemic index is a number given to a food depending on it's ability to increase the level of glucose in the blood. The higher the number the bigger the effect on your blood sugar. Glucose itself is 100, were as something like porridge is around 40. Rice cereal however is around 80, therefore although it doesn't contain sugar the fact it is heavily processed means it will still rapidly increase blood sugar and cause similar problems to high sugar cereals.

So, what should you eat instead? You need foods lower in the glycaemic index, or combinations of foods that lower the effect it has on your blood sugar. Slow release carbohydrates are an excellent start. These carbohydrates are broken down more slowly by the body and therefore the sugar they produce is released more slowly into the blood stream. These carbohydrates are usually unprocessed and high in fibre. The fibre slows the digestion of the food. An example of this is porridge oats. Protein also slows the digestion of a meal so things like eggs and fish are great breakfast options. Healthy fats are also great as the are digested more slowly so again helping keep you full for longer. Nuts and seeds are great when added to porridge.

Here are some good breakfast options:

  • Porridge made with milk/water with chia seeds
  • Scrambled egg on a slice of wholemeal toast
  • Smoked salmon with avocado and spinach
  • Banana split length ways with peanut butter and cashew nuts added to the middle

There you have it, if you want to avoid blood sugar spikes, have sustained energy levels throughout the day and reduce the amount of fat around your middle ditch the breakfast cereal and try some of the options above. For more advice on this please contact me here contact