The #1 Best Cereal for Weight Loss, Dietitian Says — Eat This Not That

It is pure to imagine that merely avoiding the old-school, sugar-coated, candy-colored cereals common in many years previous is a great approach to steer towards one thing more healthy. However relating to wholesome cereal, it is simple to be deceived.

In my 30 years as a dietitian, nearly all of my shoppers have been hoodwinked into pondering that looking for out a cereal package deal with phrases like “Multi-grain,” “With actual fruit!” or “Low sugar” means they’re selecting a weight loss-friendly cereal. Nevertheless, once I put chilly cereal vitamin information in perspective for them, it is typically an a-ha second.

If you happen to’re like lots of the individuals I’ve labored with, cereal may be tremendous complicated as a result of when it is excessive in wholesome content material (like fiber or protein), it is typically additionally excessive in one thing much less wholesome, like sugar. So there’s not often a strict good or dangerous selection.

To make it simpler so that you can navigate the cereal aisle, particularly if you happen to’re keen on trimming down, I’ve analyzed vitamin info from main cereal manufacturers which are marketed to be the healthiest. In case your objective is weight reduction—and even if you wish to preserve your sugar consumption in test—you may most likely discover this scoop on common packing containers enlightening.

Preserve studying for the reality about common “wholesome” cereals and what they’re actually doing in your weight-loss objectives. And, for extra meals perception prone to make you suppose, learn The #1 Worst Drink for Your Liver, New Research Says.


A rule of thumb for understanding how a lot sugar is in your cereal is to know that 4 grams is the same as one teaspoon. For context, a cup of Fruity Pebbles cereal accommodates 12 grams of sugar, which is the same as pouring three teaspoons of sugar right into a bowl.

If you consider it this fashion, you could be extra prone to suppose twice earlier than you go for these sweetened cereals.

Use this information to price the sugar in your cereal:

  • very low – lower than one gram
  • low – 4 grams or much less (equal to at least one teaspoon or much less)
  • medium – as much as eight grams (two teaspoons)
  • excessive – as much as 12 grams (three teaspoons)
  • very excessive – greater than 16 grams (which is 4 teaspoons)

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Carbohydrates could come from any supply: Added sugar, honey, syrup, fruit, grains, and extra. If you happen to’re making an attempt to drop extra pounds, it is essential to know that it doesn’t matter what the carb supply could also be, all carbohydrates finally convert to blood sugar. If the physique does not expend that sugar by means of bodily exercise, it is going to be saved as fats. That does not make all carbohydrates dangerous—however getting loads of motion is one thing to consider.

One other weight-loss benefit that you simply may not concentrate on is that for cereal containing fiber, you possibly can subtract the grams of fiber from the grams of sugar to know how a lot sugar your physique is definitely taking in. If Publish Raisin Bran accommodates 48 grams of whole carbohydrates and 9 grams of dietary fiber, the quantity changing to blood sugar can be 39 grams. It’s because fiber goes proper by means of the digestive system to do its job as roughage, and does not get transformed to blood glucose.

RELATED: The Stunning Impact Decreasing Sodium Might Have on Your Blood Sugar, New Research Says


In your well being usually, Cheerios are a strong possibility. Most Cheerios varieties are made with entire grain oats. Oats are excessive in soluble fiber and have an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory compound known as avenanthramide, which is just discovered on this one meals. No surprise so many individuals like it.

RELATED: The #1 Finest Oatmeal to Eat to Decrease Ldl cholesterol, Says Dietitian

honey nut cheerios

Per 1 cup: 140 energy, 2 g fats (0 g saturated fats, 0 g trans fats), 0 mg ldl cholesterol, 210 mg sodium, 30 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 12 g sugars (12 g added sugar), 3 g protein

Particularly, shoppers have requested me concerning the sugar content material in Honey Nut Cheerios. I clarify that this cereal accommodates three kinds of sugar: White sugar, honey, and brown sugar syrup—that are all simply several types of sugar with comparable energy. So, altogether, one cup of Honey Nut Cheerios has three teaspoons of sugar.

It is essential to know that even when a cereal model promotes that it is sweetened with honey, honey is sugar. Whether or not it is white sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, maple syrup, or honey… all of them elevate your blood sugar.

general mills multi grain cheerios

Per 1-1/3 cup: 150 energy, 1.5 g fats (0 g saturated fats, 0 g trans fats), 0 mg ldl cholesterol, 150 mg sodium, 32 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 8 g sugars (8 g added sugar), 3 g protein

Many customers imagine “multi grain” means extra fiber, however this is not the case. Multi Grain Cheerios have the identical quantity of fiber (three grams in a cup) as Honey Nut Cheerios and authentic Cheerios.

Now, watch what occurs after we evaluate Multi Grain Cheerios to authentic Cheerios…


Per 1-1/2 cup: 140 energy, 2.5 g fats (0.5 g saturated fats, 0 g trans fats), 0 mg ldl cholesterol, 190 mg sodium, 29 g carbohydrates, 4 g fiber, 2 g sugars ( 2g added sugar), 5 g protein

Examine the labels and you will see Multi Grain Cheerios have eight grams of added sugar, and authentic Cheerios have simply two. This places Multi Grain Cheerios within the medium-sugar class, whereas authentic Cheerios are low sugar.

Plus, look which has greater fiber! One serving of authentic Cheerios has 40% extra fiber than a serving of Multi Grain Cheerios.

RELATED: 13 Unimaginable Issues You Can Make with a Field of Cheerios

Post shredded wheat bran cereal

Per 1-1/3 cup: 210 energy, 1.5 g fats (0.0 g saturated fats, 0 g trans fats), 0 mg ldl cholesterol, 0 mg sodium, 49 g carbohydrates, 8 g fiber, 0 g sugars (0 g added sugar), 7 g protein

One other first rate advice for a weight-loss cereal is Spoon Measurement Shredded Wheat Authentic. It accommodates nothing added: No sugar, no salt, and no fats. One cup accommodates six grams of pure fiber and 5 grams of protein. If you happen to’re in search of the last word healthful cereal, that is it.

kelloggs frosted mini wheats

Per 60 g, or about 25 biscuits: 210 energy, 1.5 g fats (0.0 g saturated fats, 0 g trans fats), 0 mg ldl cholesterol, 10 mg sodium, 51 g carbohydrates, 6 g fiber, 12 g sugars (12 g added sugar), 5 g protein

Through the years, I’ve had lots of shoppers ask me whether or not Frosted Mini Wheats are as wholesome as Shredded Wheat. My reply? As you may guess, Frosted Mini-Wheats aren’t precisely as wholesome. One cup is roofed in 12 grams of sugar—that is three teaspoons. Because of this, Shredded Wheat is the higher selection between the 2 if you happen to’re making an attempt to drop extra pounds.

RELATED: One Main Impact of Consuming Complete Grains, New Research Says

Kelloggs special k red berries cereal

Per 1 cup: 140 energy, 0.5 g fats (0.0 g saturated fats, 0 g trans fats), 0 mg ldl cholesterol, 250 mg sodium, 34 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 11 g sugars (10 g added sugar), 3 g protein

You may suppose including actual fruit makes a cereal extra nutritious… however once more, it is typically not. For instance, Particular Okay Pink Berries isn’t a extra nutritious cereal with freeze-dried strawberries added, as a result of the cereal is sweetened with brown sugar and syrup. In a single cup of this decide, there are eight grams (that is two 2 teaspoons) of added sugar.

Nevertheless, Like Cheerios, Particular Okay cereals are low-fat.

RELATED: These Fruits Drive the Most Weight Loss, In accordance with Science

kelloggs special k protein

Per 1 cup: 210 energy, 1.5 g fats (0.0 g saturated fats, 0 g trans fats), 0 mg ldl cholesterol, 260 mg sodium, 39 g carbohydrates, 5 g fiber, 8 g sugars (8 g added sugar), 15 g protein

My advice amongst Particular Okay cereals is Particular Okay Protein. There are 11 grams of protein per cup, nearly equal to the protein content material in two eggs. That is additionally an important selection for iron, because it supplies 75% of your each day consumption and is an effective supply of fiber with 5 grams. Regardless that it has one-and-a-half teaspoons of sugar added per cup, it nonetheless charges as an excellent all-in-one cereal.

RELATED: Kellogg’s Is Doing This to Keep away from a Cereal Scarcity

kelloggs kashi go honey almond flax crunch

Per 3/4 cup: 200 energy, 5 g fats (0.5 g saturated fats, 0 g trans fats), 0 mg ldl cholesterol, 140 mg sodium, 34 g carbohydrates, 8 g fiber, 12 g sugars (10 g added sugar), 9 g protein

Some shoppers ask me: “Do I want protein in my cereal?” I typically inform them it is pointless. Whereas cereals marketed for his or her comparatively excessive protein content material have turn out to be a development lately, it is helpful to beware that many high-protein cereals even have extra sugar.

By itself, greater protein does not essentially make these cereals higher at serving to you get leaner. Kashi GO Lean Honey Almond Flax Crunch has protein equal to 2 eggs, nevertheless it additionally packs on extra fats and energy in comparison with Kashi GO Lean Toasted Berry Crunch, plus extra sugar.

It does have excessive protein from the almonds, although that additionally provides it greater fats—so if you happen to’re seeking to shed weight, that is simply knowledge to bear in mind.

In order for you protein together with your breakfast cereal, select a low-sugar cereal and have one serving of protein—that is round seven grams—on the facet. Examples of meals with this quantity of protein are one egg, or one-quarter cup of sliced almonds.

RELATED: Common Meals With Extra Protein Than Beef

go lean kashi

Of the Kashi GO Lean cereals, my decide is Kashi GO Lean Authentic for its decrease energy. It has 10 grams of protein (a couple of egg) and 10 grams of fiber, which is half the each day fiber for ladies and a couple of third of each day fiber for males. It has a Medium sugar ranking with six grams, or one-and-a-half teaspoons, of added sugar.

If the concept of a “lean” cereal calls your title, certainly one of my favourite alternate options is an easy bowl of authentic Cheerios. (And if you happen to’re seeking to get lean, learn Desire a Lean Physique for Good? Undertake These 4 Workouts ASAP, Coach Says.)

high fiber bowl of bran cereal with blueberries and bananas

And the reply is—the cereal you want, simply in smaller quantities. What’s most essential is that you simply eat breakfast, as a result of this helps with sustaining long-term wholesome weight.

Here is an thought: Begin with one cup of one of many very-low or low-sugar-added cereals resembling Spoon Measurement Shredded Wheat, Cheerios Authentic, or Particular Okay Authentic. If you happen to like, add one tablespoon of entire nuts or seeds and half a cup of contemporary berries or sliced fruit. High together with your favourite milk or milk substitute. Get pleasure from!

For extra, proceed:

Writer’s Notice: For these with allergy symptoms, particular meals wants, or well being issues, please contact your medical adviser previous to consuming any new meals product.

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