Cereal manufacturers aren’t getting the message their products are too high in sugar. The sugar hit in many kids’ breakfast cereals has barely changed since we last looked at these products. Six cereals had even more sugar than they used to, with one packing a whopping 30 percent increase.
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A nutritious breakfast is the best way for your child to start the day. Studies show breakfast is associated with a healthy body weight and better nutrient intake. In addition, children are more likely to be hungry mid-morning and snack on unhealthy foods if they skip breakfast. Skipping breakfast can also negatively impact academic performance and mood.
When we looked at breakfast cereals marketed to kids in 2008 and 2013, we found many products were high in sugar and salt, and low in fibre. Our latest survey of 50 cereals has found companies have cut the sodium but it’s a different story when it comes to sugar.
We analysed the labels of 50 cereals that appeal to children using bright packaging, cartoon characters, promotional activities and sweet flavours, as well as some healthy options commonly eaten by children (such as wheat biscuits and porridge). We didn’t include all brands of porridge or wheat biscuits in our survey because they all have similar nutrition information.
Where possible, we’ve compared the sugar, sodium and fibre content with previous surveys. We’ve also calculated the health star rating and used green, orange and red symbols to show the sugar and sodium in the products. A red symbol means the product is high in sugar or sodium; green means the food has low amounts of it; orange fits somewhere in between.
There’s not a lot of fat or saturated fat in most of these cereals so we haven’t included fat or saturated fat in our survey.
Our criteria are:
≤5 5.1-22.5 >22.5.
≤120 121-600 >600.
Our criteria have been developed by UK health agencies.
Report by Belinda Castles.
(tsps per 30g)
|Previously surveyed in 2008 and/or 2013|
|Harraways Rolled Oats||5||9.2||0||9||0||1.0||0||0.1|
|Home Brand Wheat Biscuits||4.5||9.7||-12||275||-2||2.6||-10||0.2|
|Kellogg's Sultana Bran Buds||4.5||15.1||0||150||0||23.8||-10||1.8|
|Pams Wheat Biskits||4.5||9.7||-10||275||-3||2.6||-10||0.2|
|Harraways Oat Singles Honey & Golden Syrup||4||9.2||39||11||-38||25.1||10||1.9|
|Home Brand Honey Poppas||4||7.3||40||<5||0||31.0||-20||2.3|
|Kellogg's Nutri-Grain Honey Flavoured Crunch||4||5.1||232||360||-23||26.7||-20||2.0|
|Sanitarium Honey Puffs||4||6.0||5||6||-45||24.4||20||1.8|
|Sanitarium Weet-Bix Bites Wild Berry||4||9.2||0||300||0||22.2||0||1.7|
|Uncle Tobys Cheerios||4||7.3||38||265||-45||14.7||-30||1.1|
|Uncle Tobys Honey Cheerios||4||7.0||226||265||-28||17.8||-20||1.3|
|Kellogg's Coco Pops O's||3.5||7.4||0||95||0||33.4||0||2.5|
|Kellogg's Corn Flakes||3.5||5.1||96||550||-24||8.1||0||0.6|
|Nestle Milo Duo||3.5||7.6||23||100||-13||27.9||-10||2.1|
|Pams Honey Snaps||3.5||5.2||0||5||-55||37.7||-10||2.8|
|Home Brand Corn Flakes||3||2.3||10||550||-8||5.8||-10||0.4|
|Home Brand Rice Pops||3||1.0||B||570||-12||9.6||0||0.7|
|Hubbards Thank Goodness Gluten Free Cocoa Puffs||3||2.7||8||310||194||32.7||0||2.5|
|Kellogg's Rice Bubbles||3||2.5||227||530||-26||10.6||20||0.8|
|Sanitarium Skippy Cornflakes||3||2.7||-13||550||-29||7.7||-10||0.6|
|Home Brand Cocoa Puffs||2||2.0||B||410||-15||34.8||-20||2.6|
|Kellogg's Coco Pops||2||1.7||42||425||-25||36.5||0||2.7|
|Kellogg's Coco Pops Chex||2||3.3||38||530||-16||37.4||20||2.8|
|Kellogg's Crispix Honey||2||1.6||60||530||-27||28.2||20||2.1|
|Kellogg's Crunchy Nut Corn Flakes||2||2.5||0||375||6||31.7||0||2.4|
|Kellogg's Froot Loops||2||2.4||0||340||-28||38.0||-10||2.9|
|Select Honey Nut Corn Flakes||2||2.5||0||330||0||34.5||0||2.6|
|Harraways Oat Singles Plain||5||11.9||1||0.8||0.1|
|Kellogg's Mini-Wheats Little Bites Original||4.5||9.9||5||14.6||1.1|
|Select Wheat Biscuits||4.5||9.9||275||2.6||0.2|
|Freedom Foods Maple Crunch||4||7.7||255||15.7||1.2|
|Kellogg's Disney Frozen Cereal||4||11.0||145||22.2||1.7|
|Kellogg's Star Wars Cereal||4||7.8||180||26.6||2.0|
|Kellogg's Rice Bubbles Multigrain Shapes||4||11.0||145||22.2||1.7|
|Nestle Milo Protein Clusters||4||8.2||58||25.1||1.9|
|Home Brand Multi Grain||3.5||5.8||240||23.9||1.8|
|Hubbards Rice Pops||3||1.7||410||6.7||0.5|
|Hubbards Choc Mix Rice Pops||2.5||1.9||350||24.8||1.9|
|Fibre content not listed on packaging|
|Pams Corn Flakes||3.5||2.7A||-13||570||-27||8.7||-10||0.7|
|Pams Rice Snaps||3||1.0A||-55||540||-31||8.6||-20||0.6|
|Budget Cocoa Puffs||2||0.6A||0||310||-36||34.8||-20||2.6|
|Pams Coco Snaps||2||0.6A||0||310||-36||34.8||-20||2.6|
|Home Brand Fruity Rings||nc||ns||235||-18||32.8||30||2.5|
GUIDE TO THE TABLE PRODUCTS are listed by health star rating in alphabetical order. HEALTH STAR RATING nc = not able to be calculated. FIBRE, SODIUM & SUGAR (per 100g) is from label information. Fibre Anot listed on packaging but provided by company. Bnot listed in previous surveys. ns = not stated. % CHANGE compared with 2008 and/or 2013 surveys.
Check out more of our tests, articles, news and surveys in our Family & health section.
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