Cereals are almost an inevitable part of everyday life. Our day’s meals start with a bowl of cereal. It is a tasty, simple, and very quick breakfast or snack option for people of all age groups.
Let us find out in today’s discussion. Healthy eating is a part of managing your diabetic health. You have to be extra careful and include the best options that keep the body’s blood sugar levels under control.
Today, let us look at some things you must cut out of your daily diet lists to control diabetes better.
12 worst cereals that diabetics must avoid
Cereals are the easiest morning breakfast and evening snack and a sweet treat that fulfills any sugary craving. There are also many healthy cereals available, which can be substituted for sugar-loaded ones.
But which ones are the best and which ones must you, as a diabetic patient, avoid? Are the cereals that you eat beneficial for your health?
We have a list of 12 such kinds of cereal that you need to look into and reconsider to make sure that you avoid risking your diabetic health.
Let us have a look:
1. Raisin bran
This is known as one of the healthy substitutes for traditional cereals and has a healthy reputation among consumers. However, this is not the best for your diabetic diet.
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You need to cut out this option because a lot of the calories in this cereal are derived from direct sugar. This is what you are looking to avoid.
Despite being a whole grain wheat-based cereal, it is high in sugar, due to which the balance of carbs and calories tips towards an overall unhealthy recipe.
2. Cinnamon toast crunch
This is one of the top favorites of everyone that fulfills a craving with great flavors. However, cinnamon toast crunch is one to avoid if you have diabetes.
A one-cup serving of cinnamon toast crunch is bad enough as it has around 170 calories, which for diabetes, is a bit much. 28% of the calories in this cereal are from sugar.
Although this is a whole grain option, it is still a no for diabetics. A small portion sometimes is okay. However, larger portions or regular servings can have harmful results.
3. Kellogg’s low-fat granola with raisins cereal
Granola seems like a healthy choice, right? But this cereal does not fulfill that category as a healthy option for individuals with higher blood sugar levels.
It is made up of otherwise healthy ingredients and contains a good amount of fiber. Besides, this cereal contains oats, whole grain wheat, as well as almonds. But it is still unhealthy because of high carbohydrate quantities.
This low-fat granola cereal with raisins has 72 grams of carbs and saturated fats, making it an option to let go for better health management. The portions of sugar used in this cereal also add to the reason it is one of the worst choices for diabetic patients.
4. Froot loops
Froot loops are one more of such common cereals that are everyone’s favorite. Starting from the colorful looped shapes and sweet flavor, it is a delicious serving for all.
But this is a highly despised cereal among health experts. It is made up of several harmful and unnatural ingredients that can be specifically risky for diabetic patients.
Froot loops are also a lot of calories and carbohydrates in a bowl, which is exactly what we are trying to avoid in a diabetic morning meal choice. In addition to this, they are also not a good choice if you are looking to lose some weight.
The sugar alone accounts for around 44% of the total calories found in Froot loops. This is a bad sign that you need to let go.
5. Corn flakes
Upsetting that this popular option makes it down to our worst cereals list, isn’t it? Corn flakes are supposedly a healthy cereal choice and one of our go-to options.
But they are just sugar-coated flakes that can hamper your blood sugar levels and lead to mismanagement of your diabetic levels. On top of that, it is almost all carbohydrates and hardly any fiber.
Moreover, corn flakes are high in glycemic index, which indicates that it does not fit in your diabetic diet list.
Well, what is worse than corn flakes? Of course, flavored corn flakes. They are higher in sugar and also have added artificial flavoring.
6. Muesli with added sugar
Muesli is indeed a good choice for diabetic cereal. But usually, all available brands have added sugar in muesli. This makes it a bad choice for diabetics.
Regular muesli does have some fiber and goodness that can be derived from nuts and grains. But these benefits can be overshadowed due to the presence of sugar as well as salt.
You must be cautious of having muesli with no added sugar to ensure that you benefit from the nutrients.
7. Granola with added seeds, fruits, or nuts
Granola does feel like a healthy option but can be taxing upon your blood sugar levels.
This cereal, without added milk, accounts for over 250 calories in one serving. The number of calories rises when milk is added, as it adds around 80 more calories.
It also has saturated fat that can harm the diabetic levels and cause other risks in the body. All in all, it makes a rather fatty breakfast that can be unhealthy.
This is a cereal packed with flavor and sweetness that makes it unfit for consumption by diabetic patients. The very primary ingredient in this cereal is sugar that is the reason for diabetic mismanagement.
In addition to this, this cereal also has added hydrogenated oils that diabetic patients must avoid.
Moreover, the presence of added artificial color and flavors makes it more problematic for health.
Apple jacks are one to avoid by diabetic patients to ensure proper blood sugar maintenance. They are bowls of sugar and calories that harm the metabolism and make one of the worst choices for a healthy morning snack.
9. JIF peanut butter cereal
Like most peanut butter brands, this cereal also uses peanut butter that has excess hydrogenated oil. This is especially bad for diabetics and their cholesterol levels. Moreover, diabetic patients are more vulnerable to cardiovascular risks.
This is also a bowl that serves a lot of sugar with the cereal, raising the number of total calories in the bowl.
Peanut butter is a good addition to your cereals to add some protein and healthy fats, but it must be diabetic-safe peanut butter. You can look for particularly healthy cereal brands that look into diabetic specifications and make a health-friendly recipe.
10. Honey loops
If you have ever had this cereal, you would be familiar with the sugar-coated rings and their overly sweet flavor. This is a cereal that must be avoided at all costs.
It is all sugar and no healthy nutrients. A lot of carbs do make a bowl that provides instant energy but at the same time can harm your diabetic blood sugar levels.
11. Cocoa Krispies
This is another common favorite for the morning breakfast bowl. It claims to be made with healthy ingredients that provide a full bowl of energy for kids.
But on the other hand, it is not one for you if you have diabetes. Along with the whole food items, it is also filled with a lot of sugar. Every spoonful of this cereal is loaded with sugar.
This can be very unhealthy for controlling your body’s blood sugar levels. Another ingredient that makes it a bad deal for diabetic patients is hydrogenated vegetable oil in this cereal, which we already discussed in the previous sections to be an unhealthy addition.
12. Instant oatmeal
Oats are healthy as well as fiber and nutrient-rich sources of food. They are especially good and recommended for diabetic patients. But when it comes to instant oatmeal, it is an unsafe option for your blood sugar levels.
Oats found in such instant oatmeal cereals are processed and polished, which strips it of its good nutrients.
Moreover, instant oatmeal has more added preservatives. Unlike large flake oats, instant oatmeal has a medium GI and not a low GI. This shows that instant versions of oats aren’t all that healthy after all.
It is better to stick to large flake unprocessed varieties.
How to get a cereal that is good for you?
The key to a good and diabetic-safe cereal lies in searching the back of the cereal pack for its ingredients list.
- Look for a whole-grain blend like quinoa, oatmeal, and nuts, as they are high-fiber formulas. Always get whole-grain cereals for the best benefits.
- Stick to 6 grams or less sugar and look for high-fiber options.
- Avoid added flavors, sweeteners, dry fruits, etc.
You can also:
- Avoid adding sugar, honey, or syrups to your cereals. Instead, choose berries that make your bowl of cereal healthier.
- Choose low-fat milk for reducing overall calories and fats in the cereal bowl.
Some good choices are:
- Whole-grain buckwheat
- Whole oatmeal
- Whole cornmeal
- No salt and no sugar muesli