Is Your Natural Cereal Making You Fat? Label Lies Exposed!
Is your “natural” cereal secretly making you gain weight and hindering your fight against fat? Discover why your favorite healthy cereal may not be so healthy after all and learn the secret to buying a truly healthy cereal.
“Many popular cereals are now marked as natural healthy choices for the most important meal of your day. But what exactly are you getting when you are buying a ‘natural cereal’?” asks Dr. Oz as he reveals the label lies some manufacturers hide their less-than-natural cereal ingredients.
With Dr. Oz is special guest nutritionist Lauren Slayton, MS, RD and author of “The Little Book of Thin,” who explains to viewers that how cereals are labeled can confuse the consumer and trick them into buying a cereal that they really would not eat if they knew what was really in them.
“It’s confusing. These words like ‘healthy' and 'all-natural' and 'whole grain’―they lure us in,” says Ms. Slayton. She explains that one mistake people make is believing that the sugar content is the biggest thing to watch out for in a cereal. As it turns, out sugar content is minor compared to ingredients that are hidden under an “all-natural” label that is not defined clearly as what to truly constitutes as being all-natural—especially in the buyer’s mind when they are led into thinking that the phrase "All-Natural" automatically translates as a healthy food choice.
“‘All-Natural’ is the most misleading claim or term on cereal boxes or on food packages in general…manufacturers get away with it because it is a vague term,” says Ms. Slayton. “There’s no legal meaning. There’s no way to enforce it and no agency that is looking into that.”
Label Lie Offender #1: “All-Natural Corn”
According to Ms. Slayton, cereals labeled as consisting of “all-natural corn” are in reality often genetically modified corn and soy.
“These contain GMOs and they are trying to pretend that they are natural,” says Ms. Slayton.
Dr. Oz explains to viewers that GMOs stands for “gene modified organisms,” which essentially means that the plant the food came from has been genetically altered from its natural form. One example he gives is that some farms grow potatoes with seeds that contain genes from bacteria that helps the potato plant resist infestation by insects. The result is a potato that is physically indistinguishable from a non-gene modified potato and sold alongside potatoes that are actually natural―but no one can tell the difference, and the unregulated “all-natural” labeling is actively misleading the consumer.
“Right now it is virtually impossible to avoid GMOs,” says Dr. Oz. “Nearly 70% of the foods in your supermarket are made with these types of ingredients.”
According to Ms. Slayton there are two ways to avoid GMO containing foods—look for foods that are labeled with either the "USDA Organic" label or the "NON GMO Verified Project" label.
Label Lie Offender #2: “Whole Grain”
According to what Ms. Slayton reveals to viewers about “Whole Grain” labeled cereals and other food products, many contain processed grains, hidden sugars and fats that interfere with belly fat weight loss dieting.
“The problem with ‘Whole Grain’ is that it doesn’t necessarily mean that every grain in there is whole,” says Ms. Slayton. “There can be some ‘un-whole’ grains and an abundance of refined, processed grains that we are trying to avoid—the grains that are raising our blood sugar, that don’t satisfy us as long. And you know that we are focused on the grain here, but research has shown that many of these whole grain products also contain high fructose corn syrup, artificial flavors and trans fats—so it’s a mine field.”
To avoid these fake whole grain foods, Ms. Slayton tells viewers that they have to look for those that are advertised as being “100% Whole Grain” or “100% All-Wheat” on the labeling. Do not fall for advertisement word play such as “100% of Your Day’s Whole Grain” warns Dr. Oz as some food manufacturers try to work around the required “100% Whole Grain” or “100% All-Wheat” label if their product is not truly all-natural as consumers expect.
To discover more label lies from Dr. Oz, take his label lie quiz on The Dr. Oz Show website.
For more about labeling that is false and/or misleading, click-on the titled link, "Are You Using the Right Sunscreen? Maybe Not.”
Image Source: Courtesy of PhotoBucket
Reference: The Dr. Oz Show