Breaking: Sugary Cereal Bad for You

by flickr user Q u e n t i n used under Creative Commons license

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.


Yale’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity released a groundbreaking study over the weekend showing, definitively, that Corn Pops are still bad for kids. Like, really bad. So bad, only 8 percent kid’s cereals qualify under the federal Women, Infants and Children program (WIC). Recently, big cereal companies like Kellogg’s and General Mills have thrown their weight behind ad campaigns that tout the cereal’s health benefits, most notably added fiber. 

Kellogg’s has spent big bucks advertising a measly three grams of fiber (see video below) in two of its best-selling cereals, even though one of those cereals, Froot Loops (41% sugar) tied for sixth WORST cereal for children, beating out only Reese’s Puffs, Corn Pops, Lucky Charms, Cinnamon Toast Crunch and Cap’n Crunch. In 2008, cereal companies spent $165 million advertising to kids, 94% by General Mills and Kellogg’s. With the web, sugary cereals have found even more ingenious ways to snag new noshers, making me nostalgic for the days when you fished 3-D glasses from the bottom of the bag or saved up your box tops for a baseball cap.

Despite the Rudd Center’s findings, all the cereals mentioned in this post meet the industry’s standards as “better for you food.” Among the study’s other findings: “Cereals marketed directly to children have 85% more sugar, 65% less fiber, and 60% more sodium than cereals marketed to adults for adult consumption.” At the same time, many supposedly healthy cereals for adults, like Kellogg’s Smart Start, have just as much sugar as Corn Pops.

Still not convinced? Go back to our March/April Food Package and take a look for yourself.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate