Best Healthy Cereals for Optimal Morning Nutrition Reviewed

When you’re duking it out in the ring, training will only get you so far. While yes, it is important to train and to push your body to the limits, there’s another very important aspect to the equation. The other part of that equation? Getting adequate nutrition. And there’s no meal more important than breakfast. After you’ve been sleeping for eight hours, your body is craving nutrition, so you want to be sure that you’re putting the best possible fuel in the tank. Considering how important this meal is, then, it is doubly important for athletes. Whether you’re jumping right into a morning training session or are simply fueling up your body for a workout session later in the day, starting the morning off right is important all around. Putting less-than-optimal food into your body first thing in the morning is a surefire way to set yourself up for failure. What, then can you eat to get the right start to your day?

 

 

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Cheeriosimg
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Cascadian Farmsimg
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There’s a tried and true favorite that is eaten in the West for decades. I’m sure you’ve heard of it. Look no further than to the traditional breakfast favorite found in cereal to get your day’s best start. There are many benefits to eating this breakfast food. It’s quick, easy, and simple. Simply pour milk over it and eat it with a spoon. No need to mess around with frying pans or pots, and no need to wait–it’s instantaneously edible. Usually, when food is fast and easy, it’s terrible for you. But breakfast grains are the exception to the rule and hit the sweet spot between being nutritionally complete as well as efficient and easy. This then begs the question: what is the best one, and where can you purchase it? We’ve answered this and other questions below.

 

10 Best Healthy Cereals

 

 

1. Cheerios

This product is manufactured and sold by the company General Mills. General Mills is a megalithic corporation with its fingers in just about every niche in the food industry, and some more besides. This product is one of the most well-known breakfast foods on the market, and have been on the market for over seventy years. Their winning formula has stood the test of time and has come to be an iconic staple in the Western pantry. This product comes in an exceptionally large size, is completely gluten-free, and is an excellent source of whole grains.
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Heart Strong
In today's society, one of the most common health problems that people face in life is heart disease and issues of circulation and blood flow. If you're an athlete, this is especially important. You need to make sure that your ticker stays strong so that you can get the maximum endurance to stay strong and go longer. This product allows you to do just that, being tasty and good for your heart.

Great Snack
Some people think that products like these can only be eaten at one time of the day--and that's during breakfast. However, oftentimes you'll find yourself pressed to find a healthful, low-calorie snack to sustain you between meals. Well, look no further. This food isn't just confined to the morning time; you can take it with you wherever you go, and eat it whenever you're craving.

Cost and Value
This product falls onto the low end of the price range when it is compared to the other products we've included on our list. That low price is high in value though, as this is one of the top-rated items we've included here. You'd be hard pressed to find a breakfast brand as iconic as this, with this many benefits for your body and mind.
Pros

Gluten-free

Whole grain

Great snack

Large size

Heart healthy

Cons

Packaging may rip in transit

2. Fiber One

This product is also manufactured and sold by General Mills. General Mills has made many top-rated products in the breakfast marketplace, as well as in the larger food industry. They are one of the best-selling companies in the world, and their products reflect this quality. They have many niche brands that target specific needs, such as Fiber One. This product comes in a larger-than-usual sized box and contains many healthful ingredients to get you on your way to optimal nutrition and optimal performance.
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Digestive Health
This product has many attributes that make it not only great for you but great for your gut as well. Digestive health is something that is often overlooked in terms of food selection, but no more. This product has 13 grams of whole grains per serving and more than half your daily recommended dose of fiber. Your digestive tract will be happy you purchased this product.

10 Vitamins and Minerals
It's extremely difficult to get adequate nutrition nowadays. It seems like everybody is deficient in one thing or another. Keeping track of your daily values of vitamins and minerals seems like just another frustrating and time-consuming task in our already-overloaded lives. This product is packed with nutrition to help you meet your daily needs.

Cost and Value
This product falls onto the high end of the price range when compared to the other items we've included in our list. However, that's because you're buying in bulk. When you do the math, the price for each individual package comes out to quite a reasonable amount. This product packs in a lot of nutrition for one great bulk; it's no wonder so many people around the world have this product in their pantry already. You could be one of them.
Pros

Digestive health

13g whole grain serving

55% daily value fiber

16.2oz box

10 vitamins minerals

Cons

Too crunchy

3. Cascadian Farms

This product is brought to you by a company known as Cascadian Farms. Cascadian Farms is a subsidiary of the larger company General Mills. The Cascadian Farms brand has numerous products that are focused on all natural and healthful ingredients while also staying low on sugar and other troublesome additives. This product is an excellent example of this company's modus operandi and has several great features, such as the fact that it contains only the purest ingredients, and that it also makes a great snack for the eater on the go.
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Oat and Honey Flavor
Sometimes when your focus is on the nutritional value of a specific food item, you lose sight of one of the other most important aspects: flavor. Too many breakfast foods are great in terms of nutrition, but taste like hamster bedding. This product gives you great oats and honey flavor while not sacrificing nutrition.

Organic
Chemical insecticides, herbicides, and pesticides are everywhere in today's agriculture. For many, the idea of eating food that has been blasted with chemicals literally designed to poison puts them off their appetite. This product is made with ingredients that are fully USDA Organic compliant, so you don't have to worry about chemical pesticides infiltrating your food.

Cost and Value
This product falls onto the low end of the price range when it is compared to the other items that we've included on our list. It is the least expensive item included here. That low price contains a lot of value; it is both nutritious and organic, grown without any chemical insecticides, herbicides, and fungicides. This product also sports an excellent flavor that you won't want to pass up.
Pros

Oat and honey flavor

NonGMO

Organic

Nothing artificial

Great snack

Cons

No bulk option

4. Ezekiel

4. Ezekiel
This product is brought to you by a company Food for Life. Food for Life was founded in 1964 by a single man who was working in a health foods store. It has since grown into a brand that produces some of the most high-quality natural foods on the marketplace. Food for Life is perhaps most famous for their Ezekiel brand, which is borne by both a line of bread and a line of breakfast foods. This product contains absolutely zero artificial ingredients, colors, or additives; you're only getting the purest product possible.
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Frustration-Free Packaging
We've all been there: you're struggling to rip open the plastic bag inside the cardboard box to get at your tasty breakfast flakes and you pull to hard. The force rips the bag open and flakes explode everywhere: the counter, the floors, your hair. This product has frustration-free packaging to help you avoid this extremely common, if annoying, occurrence.

Diet Compliant
For those who have dietary restrictions, finding foods they are allowed to eat can be one huge pain in the neck. Having to scrutinize the ingredients list with squinted eyes, you know it's a huge waste of time. This product is clearly marked as both vegan and dairy-free--so you don't have to worry about reading a miles-long ingredients list to make sure you can eat it.

Cost and Value
This product falls into the high end of the price range when it is compared to the other products we've included on our list. It is by far the most expensive item listed here. Again, though, that high price is deceptive. This product comes in a six-pack, so you're actually getting quite a lot of product for your money. From such a high-caliber company, the opportunity to get bulk-purchase savings is a unique and rare opportunity.
Pros

6-pack

Organic, vegan, dairy-free, kosher

No additives

No artificial ingredients

Frustration-free packaging

Cons

Small box size

5. Puffins

5. Puffins
This product is manufactured and sold by a company called Barbara's Bakery. Barbara's Bakery is a company that was founded in 1971 and makes nutritious and delicious baked goods and breakfast products for sale to the general public. They have many different breakfast products available, many of which are named after animals, as this product is. This product has many great features, such as the fact that it is Non-GMO Project verified, has 22 grams of whole grains, and is completely gluten-free.
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Brown Rice
For people with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, shopping for breakfast foods can be a real drag. Not only are the traditional options out the window, but scanning through the aisle to find something you can eat can be frustrating and annoying. This product is made with a non-traditional grain, brown rice so that it is completely free of gluten.

6g of Sugar
When you're looking for a healthful way to start the morning, sugar is your worst enemy. Not only is it terrible for your teeth, but it's also terrible for the rest of you as well. It gets converted into fat and it can wreak havoc on the immune system. This product knows the truth about sugar and contains only a minimal amount.

Cost and Value
This product falls onto the high end of the price range when compared to the other products we've listed here. It is the third most expensive item. However, you are getting several boxes worth of product for your money. This product offers you bulk savings and nutritious contents. Overall, you'll want to make sure you get in on this winning combination.
Pros

NonGMO-verified

Whole grain brown rice

6g sugar

22g whole grain

Gluten free

Cons

May go stale

6. Kix

6. Kix
This product is manufactured and sold by the company General Mills. As previously stated, General Mills is a force to be reckoned with in the food industry, especially when it comes to breakfast grains. This product is an excellent example of an item that has been on supermarket shelves since 1937 and still manages to bring in huge amounts in sales. This product is a childhood favorite and has many strong features, such as the fact that it makes a great snack, and it is also free of any artificial ingredients.
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Large Box Size
Most box sizes max out at sixteen ounces. This translates to you the consumer getting less product for your money. When you shop, you want to ensure that you're getting the most bang for your buck. This product has a larger than usual box size, tipping the scales at eighteen ounces. With this hefty product, the savings really begin to add up.

Good Source of Calcium
Strong bones are important for any athlete. But nowadays it can be a struggle to make sure that you're getting enough calcium in your diet. Most of us don't have the wherewithal or the mental attention to drink the recommended three glasses of milk per day. However, this product is an excellent source of calcium. By including it in your diet you'll be getting your daily values in no time.

Cost and Value
This product falls onto the low end of the price range when it is compared to the other items we have included on our list. However, it is slightly more expensive than the other single-package boxes. Despite this, the slightly larger size means that you are still getting a decent amount of product for your money. Being free of artificial ingredients and also being a great source of calcium are just added perks.
Pros

Childhood favorite

Fiber, calcium, vitamins

18oz size

Great snack

No artificial ingredients

Cons

Price

7. Kashi GoLean Vanilla

7. Kashi GoLean Vanilla
This product is produced by a company called Kashi. Kashi is a company that was established in 1984. Their goal was and remains to bring high-quality natural foods to the general marketplace. Kashi is a subsidiary of Kellog's, and they have dozens of different products for sale both online and in local supermarkets. This product is an excellent example of their inventory, with many great features such as its multigrain clusters, the fact that it is one hundred percent whole grain, and the fact that it comes in a four-pack.
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Cholesterol Free
One of the most vital parts of health is to maintain healthy levels of different kinds of cholesterol. There is healthy cholesterol and then there is unhealthy cholesterol. When your levels of "bad" cholesterol get too high, they can spell danger for your health, your heart, and your arteries. This product sidesteps this minefield completely by being totally cholesterol free

Contains ALA Omega-threes
Omega Threes are crucial when it comes to maintaining a healthy body. Omega threes perform various and diverse functions. They do everything from regulating mood and helping to prevent the onset of depression and helps to lubricate the joints to prevent joint stiffness and arthritis. It also helps to lower the amount of fat in your blood and thus lowers your risk of heart disease.

Cost and Value
This product falls into the middle of the price range when compared to other items we've included on our list. However, that mid-range price gets you a four-pack of product, ensuring that you won't have to be running to the store anytime soon for a refill. In addition, its heart-healthy components and vitality-increasing omega-threes make this a product you definitely won't want to miss out on.
Pros

Multigrain clusters

Cholesterol free

ALA omega-three

Four-pack

100% whole grain

Cons

Texture

8. Kellogg's All Bran

8. Kellogg's All Bran
This product is brought to you by a company called Kellogg's. Kellogg's is a company that almost needs no introduction. They have been in existence for more than one hundred years, having been founded in 1906. The fact that they have lasted more than a hundred and ten years in the marketplace shows not only their business savvy but the superior quality of their products just like this one. This product has many great attributes, such as the fact that it contains seven vital vitamins and minerals.
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Wheat Bran and Psyllium
This product is full to the brim of wheat bran and psyllium. In layman's terms, these are high-fiber and extremely healthy for both you and your digestion. It is due to these components that this product is able to give you half of your daily dose of dietary fiber. You'll be sure to experience greater levels of digestive health with this item.

100% Folic Acid, Vitamins B6 and 12
When you're living in the 21st century, it can be difficult for you to ensure that you are getting adequate nutrition. This product has a large range of different vitamins and minerals. It contains folic acid, which can help prevent cancer and lowers your homocysteine levels. It also contains Vitamin B6, which regulates brain health and hormone production. Finally, it also has a healthy dose of B12, which supports the health of both the nerve and blood cells.

Cost and Value
This product falls onto the low end of the price range when you compare it to the other items we've assembled on this list. This product has a slightly higher price when it is compared against the other single boxed products on this list. Its high dose of fiber and it's B-complex vitamin punch is definitely worth the cost. Overall, this product is packed with value.
Pros

Wheat bran and psyllium

Low-fat

7 Vitamins minerals

100% folic acid, Vitamins B6 and 12

Half daily fiber

Cons

Flavor

9. Total

9. Total
This product is brought to you by a company named General Mills. General Mills has brought many of the products on this list to the shelves of stores near you. This particular product is an excellent example of General Mill's continuing mission to bring only the highest quality and best tasting products to the marketplace. This item has many strong attributes, such as the fact that it is made completely from one hundred percent whole grains. Additionally, it has a great crunchy texture. Finally, it has one hundred percent your daily values of many vital vitamins, nutrients, and minerals.
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110 Calories
Nowadays it's not only important to keep an eye on the nutritional content of any given piece of food. It is equally, if not more important for the athlete to keep an eye on the caloric content. First of all, you need to ensure that you're getting just the right amount of calories so that you don't gain unwanted weight. Secondly, any athlete has higher caloric requirements than the average person--you need to ensure that you're getting the fuel your body needs.

Nutty Flavor
Sometimes a product can be the healthiest thing in the world with all of the vitamins and minerals you need for optimal performance--and it can still taste terrible. This product, though, has a great nutty flavor in addition to its outstanding nutritional content. No one wants to find out that the product they've spent money on has a terrible flavor, but this is one product that won't leave a bad taste in your mouth.

Cost and Value
This product falls into the high end of the price range when it is compared to the other items we've included on our list. That, however, comes from the fact that this product comes in a three-pack. When you do the math, the single boxes each come out to a reasonable price, though it is slightly more than what other single boxes on this list cost. With the great features of this product, though, that slight price difference is negligible.
Pros

110 calories

Nutty flavor

Completely whole grain

100% daily values

Crunchy

Cons

Bland

10. Uncle Sam Wheat Berry Flakes

10. Uncle Sam Wheat Berry Flakes
This product is brought to you by a company called Three Sisters Cereal. Three Sisters is a company dedicated to providing high-quality breakfast foods with natural ingredients. Their other notable products include Puffins, which are also included in this list. Their other notable brands include Mom's Best and Barbara's. This product is an excellent example of their inventory, with several great features, such as the fact that it comes in a six-pack and is made with flax seed.
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Whole Wheat Kernels
This is a product that is made with whole wheat kernels. However, for some people, there can be confusion about exactly what that means. Many grains are made with processed wheat, which only uses a part of the seed. This refined grain is generally less beneficial to your body and your digestive health. This product uses the entire wheat kernel, so you get the whole range of benefits.

Low Glycemic Index Food
Blood sugar is something that most people are at least aware of, but athletes especially so. For those who are constantly pushing their bodies to the limit, being aware of their bodily systems is a must. Few things are worse than eating a high-glycemic-index breakfast before a workout and then having a blood sugar crash as you're trying to train. You won't have that problem with this product.

Cost and Value
This product falls onto the high end of the price range when you compare it to the other items we've included on our list. It is by far the most expensive item we've included here. However, this is due to two reasons. First, is because you're getting a six-pack, which is the largest volume of any product offered here. Secondly, the high quality of the product also has to be taken into account. When divided into individual boxed prices, this product comes out to a very reasonable price.
Pros

6-pack

Whole wheat kernels

Flax seed

Low glycemic index

No added sugar

Cons

Boxes may rip in transit

 

As the old adage goes, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Imagine that your body is an engine and that the food you are eating is the fuel that you are putting into that engine. If you are putting in terrible, low-quality fuel, then you are going to get sub-par performance, and eventually, the engine is going to give out. The same is true with food. If you start your day off with terrible food, you’re just setting yourself up for failure. There are so many high-quality breakfast grains out there for you to choose from and a huge plus of these kinds of foods is that they are totally simple, easy, and fast. Simply pour milk of your choice over it and then chow down. Though the meal is simple, it can be intimidating to choose the best breakfast from the hundreds of brands out there. However, with the information you’ve learned here, you’re more than ready to go out into the world and make your purchase.

 

 

Criteria for Evaluating the Best Healthy Cereals

How it’s Grown

Non-GMO: Some products on the market boast that they are Non-GMO Project Verified. But what does that mean? First off, you have to understand some terminology. GMO stands for Genetically Modified Organisms. This means that the genes have been modified in a lab to perform certain functions, such as being impervious to a certain pesticide, or to fight off certain damaging insects. However, messing around with the genome and the DNA of our food rubs some people the wrong way, and changing one genetic aspect of our food may have unforeseen and untested health consequences. Foods that are Non-GMO mean that they have not been subject to genetic modification.

Organic: Most foods today are grown with pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides. These chemicals are literally poisons designed to fight off various pests, insects, fungi, and more. However, these poisons linger on our food, even as they are shelved in the store. Foods that are grown organically do not use any of these harmful chemicals and are only exposed to natural means of pest control, such as using ladybugs or neem oil.

Conventional: Conventional growing practices refer to the standard method of growing. If it’s not labeled as non-GMO or Organic, odds are it was grown conventionally. Conventionally grown crops make up the largest part of US agriculture. The majority of the foods we eat are grown conventionally. Food has been grown this way by and large for the last five decades.

Nutrition

Daily Values: There are many nutrients that we require as human beings. Whether it’s Vitamins A, C, or D, Calcium or Thiamin, you want to know that the product you’re purchasing has a good range of nutrition across the board. You can check out a product’s nutritional profile by looking at the nutritional label that’s located on the side of the box. Pictures of this are usually listed if you are going to be purchasing online. Breakfast grains tend to be jam-packed with nutrients but make sure that the product you’re considering has the nutrients you need. For example, if you’re borderline anemic, consider an option that’s heavy on iron.

Fiber: Breakfast grains are a great way to get in your daily fiber requirements. As humans, we need fiber in our diets for optimal digestive health. If we don’t get enough fiber, we may not eliminate waste products as efficiently, and our intestinal tract may suffer. Look for product options that give you a decent percentage of your daily requirement of fiber so that you can be sure of your digestive health. After all, if you’re digesting efficiently, that means your body is working at peak performance.

Packaging

Single Box: Products such as these tend to be sold in one of two ways. The first way is in single boxes that you order one at a time. The second way is to buy in bulk. For some people, however, such as those who live alone, you may not need to purchase twenty boxes of corn flakes at a time. If you have a varied diet and only eat these foods every once in a while, having a large amount around will only cause them to go stale. For those people, buying single boxes at a time is the most efficient and economical choice.

Multi-pack: However, if you’re someone who plans on eating the same product every morning, or you live with another person who will also be eating these foods, you may want to consider purchasing multi-packs. Multi-packs serve two purposes. First, they save you time and energy by allowing you to only have to make one purchase, instead of having to go back every week to order another box. Secondly, they save you money by allowing you to get in on the savings that come from buying in bulk.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Will this product go stale?
A: 
Eventually, yes. Prevent this by sealing it up tight with a clip, or by storing it in a storage container.

Q: What do I do if my product is damaged when it arrives?
A: 
Contact the seller immediately to arrange for a replacement.

Q: What’s the difference between organic and conventionally grown food?
A: 
Organically grown food has been grown without herbicides, pesticides, fungicides, or insecticides. Conventionally grown foods make use of all of these chemicals.

Q: Are there benefits to buying in bulk?
A: 
Generally, if you go through a decent amount of food, there can be real savings had by buying in bulk. However, if you’re only going through one box of cereal a month, then the other boxes you’ve purchased might go stale before you get around to eating them.

Q: What exactly is non-GMO?
A: 
Non-GMO refers to a variety of food that has not been tampered with or altered in terms of its genetics. GMO stands for “Genetically Modified Organism”.

 

Sources

  1. Multiple, Cereal, Informational
  2. Multiple, Conventional Farming,
  3. Multiple, What is GMO?, Nonprofit
  4. Multiple, FAQs, Nonprofit