It's no secret that some of our favorite childhood cereals contain more sugar than dessert, which is why many of us have left the Cocoa Puffs, Fruity Pebbles, and Froot Loops on the shelves. With cereal still a breakfast of choice, people have been opting for boxes assumed to be "healthy" like Special K, Raisin Bran, and even Honey Nut Cheerios as a replacement, but these cereals may not be as nutritious as you think.
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The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently announced that it is proposing changes to its definition of the word "healthy" in order to help the greater population make smarter breakfast choices. The FDA's explanation of the term has not been modified since 1994, so to say we're due for an upgrade would be an understatement, as we have a lot more knowledge about what a healthy diet looks like today.
Under the new definition, in order to use the "healthy" label on food packaging, foods would need to contain a hearty amount of ingredients from at least one of the food groups like fruit, vegetables, and dairy, as recommended by the Dietary Guidelines. Plus, the product would have to be limited in the categories of saturated fat, sodium, and added sugar.
While this new label goes for all foods, cereal was thrown around in the proposed rule and in the FDA's official announcement, due to the quantities of added sugar.
As mentioned earlier, Special K, Raisin Bran, and Honey Nut Cheerios will be stripped of their healthy label, but the list goes on of household names that will have their badge taken away. This includes Honey Bunches of Oats, Frosted Mini Wheats, Life, and Corn Flakes.
Hopefully this new change will serve as education to more Americans about what constitutes "healthy" and maybe lead to better decisions in the grocery store.