Monday, August 23, 2010

Down (with) the Grocery Aisle - Part 3: Cereals, Breads and the Bakery

In our last blog post we spoke about what types of meats you should be eating.
Today we are going to discuss cereals, breads and the dreaded Bakery. So let's jump right in. 

Many cereals really lack quite a bit of nutrition. If anything they simply provide an abundance of carbohydrates in the morning. And carbohydrates are indeed needed in the mornings. But what you really need to look out for is where the carbohydrates are coming from. 

Here are the characteristics of a GOOD cereal::
  • 4-g of fiber per serving
  • First ingredient is whole grain
  • has fewer than 15-g of sugar
Strive to make the best choice possible. If there are not any cereals that meet these requirements where you are, then don't eat cereal. Oatmeal meets all of these requirements. So, if you're ever staring at a "continental breakfast" while on the road, consider going with oatmeal. Odds are that is going to be your best choice.

As for other breakfast foods, this is all I have to say, and I hope you get this: At some point it became permissible for our society to eat desserts for breakfast. Cake used to be a special occasion treat. Now it has become the daily breakfast for many people in the form of donuts, danish rolls, pancakes covered in syrup and loads of sugar covered cereals. 

Pancakes are okay assuming eat only 1 and pair it with an egg-white omelet  or some yogurt. Waffles and french toast are going to fall into the "dessert for breakfast" category because they are often so sweet and so dense in useless calories that they are sure to sabotage your weight loss effort if eaten more than once per month.

Your bread choices should meet similar standards as your cereal. They should have at least 4-g of fiber per serving, NO HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, and should have fewer than 15-g of sugar (for bread even THAT may be high!)

Be careful with tortilla's as well. They can often be loaded with calories and even contain quite a bit of fat. Bakersfield is a city heavily saturated with Mexican restaurants. This makes it very easy to consume a large amount of carbohydrates. 

The bottom line here: READ LABELS. Minimize added sugar and focus on fiber. Everything with a label needs to have at least 4-g of sugar.

Tomorrow we will continue our trip around the grocery store with the Dairy section!

1 comment:

courtneyb said...

Thanks for this info Aaron! Cereals & breads are always a struggle, but this is good information I can use. I knew about keeping the sugar content low (I try to keep it under 10g of sugar) but didn't know to look for 4g of fiber per serving!

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