Cereal is a staple in 91 percent of American households. Most eat it for breakfast, but 11 percent have cereal for dinner, according to the market research company Mintel. Consumer Reports hunted down the most nutritious cereals that are also tasty.
Like nine out of ten families in the United States, the Gavila-Russos kick off the morning with a bowl of cereal.
"It's important for us to start out the day eating something that's really nutritional because I think it'll carry us through the day and make us feel better," Joan Gavila said.
There are so many choices in the cereal aisle with healthy claims on the labels. Consumer Reports set out to find which healthy cereals taste the best.
So what is "healthy?" Look for cereals that contain at least five grams of fiber or more, a maximum of three grams of fat, a maximum of 140 milligrams of sodium, and under eight grams of sugar per serving. Also important - a short ingredient list.
"When you have fewer ingredients in a cereal, you tend to have less artificial ingredients and more natural ingredients," said Adam Kaplan of Consumer Reports.
Consumer Report's expert sensory panel was asked: Can a cereal be healthy and not taste like cardboard? The answer is yes.
Bob's Red Mill Old Country Style Muesli topped the ratings. It is loaded with fresh-tasting raisins, dates, nuts, seeds, and raw oats.
Kind Vanilla Blueberry Clusters with Flax won panelists over with its large oat clusters, puffed rice, and tasty blueberry-flavored bits that nearly fooled the sensory team.
Another cereal rated "very good" is regular Cheerios. It has simple toasted oat flavors, and it goes great with a banana.
In all, Consumer Reports recommends 13 healthy, good-tasting cereals that will begin your day on a yummy note.
There are plenty of reasons to eat breakfast. Studies show it may protect you against heart disease, reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes, and may even improve your mind. Research on adults and children finds that having breakfast can enhance memory, attention, and verbal abilities by stabilizing your glucose levels. So eat up!
Consumer Reports is published by Consumers Union. Both Consumer Reports and Consumers Union are not-for-profit organizations that accept no advertising. Neither has any commercial relationship with any advertiser or sponsor on this site.
(All Consumer Reports Material Copyright 2014. Consumers Union of U.S. Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.)
7 ON YOUR SIDE