07 April 2004

Those Breakfast Cereals Are Loaded

Recently in the UK, their Consumers' Association accused breakfast cereal giants Kellogg's and Nestle of marketing products containing excessive levels of sugar, salt and fat. Basing their data on assessments done by the their Food Standards Agency, they classified 15 out of 28 breakfast brands aimed at children as worst offenders, and these were made by either Kellogg's or Nestle. Among the 100 products surveyed, 85 contained a lot of sugar, 9 had a lot of saturated fat, and 64 contained a lot of salt.

Read the full news story here.

The breakfast cereals advertisements claim that their brands are healthy foods for children. Suddenly it turns out that's not true. We are being led as accessories to a crime of producing a new breed of kids that are soon-to-be-obese and at a high risk for heart problems, stroke, hypertension, and diabetes. Who will regulate these companies?

In my country, no one even looks at potential harmful foods. We only hear alarming reports from countries like the UK or the US, and then that's the only time we find out for ourselves.

To get fat is easy, to trim down is difficult. To gain weight requires only a hedonist attitude, to lose weight requires discipline and determination (not so fun, really). We all want to be healthy but most food companies are only concerned about how to make more money. The problem is really complicated. It gets worse when no one complains and no one cares. I know there is no easy solution, but it would be most welcome if we can somehow begin to have a collective consumer effort to challenge all the "unhealthiness" we have now.

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