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Bogey and Bacall. Peaches and cream. Kids and cereal. Some things were just meant to be together! Going down the cereal aisle, kids and parents are faced with an enormous choice, from the healthiest and organic to sugary rubbish that offers nothing more than unhealthy empty calories. Unfortunately, the bad cereals are often the most colorful, with fun toys and prizes inside, cartoon characters on the front of the box and all aimed directly at children. And even more unfortunately, some parents give in to their children's demands and fill their bellies with these kinds of cereals every morning. On top of that, adults like to partake in all this sugary fare too! A sugary cereal won’t harm a child if it's a once in awhile thing, like if you are staying in a hotel overnight and taking advantage of the free breakfast buffet (a pool and the rare opportunity to chomp down on these cereals are my children's number one and two reasons for an overnight stay in a hotel!). The problem is that many children have these cereals as standard fare and consider other cereals to be bland and boring as a result.
The truth is quite the opposite. Healthy cereals are delicious and while they may not have cartoons on the front or plastic toys inside, they can set a child up for a day of healthy eating and keep unnecessary sugars at bay.
Consumer Reports tested many brands of cereal and came up with the best cereals for children, based on criteria like fiber and sugar content. The top four picks, earning a Very Good rating were:
Cheerios (General Mills)
Kix (General Mills)
Honeynut Cheerios (General Mills)
Life (Quaker Oats)
Moving on to the worst cereals, Kellogg's Honey Smacks and Post Golden Crisp are made of over fifty percent sugar. Honey Smacks contain as much sugar as a glazed doughnut. Nine of the other 28 top cereals that target children are 40 percent sugar. Cereals we may think of as harmless or relatively healthy, like Kellogg’s Rice Krispies, only received a Fair rating, due to no dietary fiber at all and salt content.