Tony the Tiger is one those childhood icons, alongside Ronald McDonald and Big Bird. But as we all know, Frosted Flakes is a sugar-fest disguised as breakfast cereal.
Kellogg’s has now introduced a new version of the cereal, “with Fiber, Less Sugar.”
How well does it fare? We took a deep nutritional look…
What you need to know:
The cereal indeed is lower in sugar than the original frosted flakes. But it still has 8 grams, which is 2 teaspoons, and appears as the second ingredient in the list below. The 3 grams of fiber (10% of DV) is added not through the use of whole grains, but by using “functional fiber” ingredients.
See these FIBERS ingredient list:
MILLED CORN, SUGAR, SOLUBLE CORN FIBER, MALT FLAVORING, SALT, OAT FIBER, CELLULOSE, IRON, ASCORBIC ACID (VITAMIN C), NIACINAMIDE, PYRIDOXINE HYDROCHLORIDE (VITAMIN B6), RIBOFLAVIN (VITAMIN B2), THIAMIN HYDROCHLORIDE (VITAMIN B1), VITAMIN A PALMITATE, FOLIC ACID, BHT (PRESERVATIVE), VITAMIN D, VITAMIN B12.
The rest of the vitamins and minerals are standard additions to breakfast cereals. Don’t count on them as your source of nutrition.
BHT – Butylated hydroxytoluene – is an antioxidant preservative that can lengthen the shelf life of a product. There is some controversy around its safety, with reports of hyperactivity and carcinogenic properties. Unfortunately, almost all cereals use BHT as a preservative.
To sum it up, Kellogg’s took a step in the right direction with the sugar decrease, but the added fiber and vitamins speak to the inherently low nutritional value of this product.
What to do at the supermarket:
If you are going to make the effort to eat healthy cereal, choose one that gets its fiber from whole grains, not additional fiber ingredients. Choose less than 6 grams of sugar (1.5 tsp), and don’t get blinded by all the added vitamins and minerals.